Age Differences in the Association Between Body Mass Index Class and Annualized Medicare Expenditures

TitleAge Differences in the Association Between Body Mass Index Class and Annualized Medicare Expenditures
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsClark, DO, Lane, KA, Ambuehl, R, Tu, W, Liu, C-J, Unroe, KT, Callahan, CM
JournalJournal of Aging and Health
Volume28
Issue1
Pagination165-179
KeywordsBMI, Health Conditions and Status, Medicare/Medicaid/Health Insurance, Older Adults
Abstract

Objective: The aim of the study is to assess the relationship between body mass index (BMI) class and Medicare claims among young-old (65-69), old (70-74), and old-old (75 ) adults over a 10-year period. Method: We assessed costs by BMI class and age group among 9,300 respondents to the 1998 Health and Retirement Study (HRS) with linked 1998-2008 Medicare claims data. BMI was classified as normal (18.5-24.9), overweight (25-29.9), mild obesity (30-34.9), or severe obesity (35 or above). Results: Annualized total Medicare claims adjusted for age, gender, ethnicity, education, and smoking history were 109 greater for severely obese young-old adults in comparison with normal weight young-old adults (US 9,751 vs. US 4,663). Total annualized claim differences between the normal weight and severely obese in the old and old-old groups were not statistically significant. Discussion: Excess Medicare expenditures related to obesity may be concentrated among severely obese young-old adults. Preventing severe obesity among middle and older aged adults may have large cost implications for society.

URLhttp://jah.sagepub.com/content/28/1/165
DOI10.1177/0898264315589574
Citation Key8357
PubMed ID26112066
PubMed Central IDPMC4691214