Background: With the ageing population, the number of older trauma patients has increased. The aim of this study was to assess non-surgical health care costs of older trauma patients and to identify which characteristics of older trauma patients were associated with high health care costs. Methods: Trauma patients aged ≥65 years who were admitted to a hospital in Noord-Brabant, the Netherlands, were included in the Brabant Injury Outcome Surveillance (BIOS) study. Non-surgical in-hospital and up to 24- months post-hospital health care use were obtained from hospital registration data and collected with the iMTA Medical Consumption Questionnaire which patients completed 1 week and 1, 3, 6, 12 and 24 months after injury. Log-linked gamma generalized linear models were used to identify cost-driving factors. Results: A total of 1910 patients were included in the study. Mean total health care costs per patient were €12,190 ranging from €8390 for 65–69 year-olds to €15,550 for those older than 90 years. Main cost drivers were the posthospital costs due to home care and stay at an institution. Falls (72%) and traffic injury (15%) contributed most to the total health care costs, although costs of cause of trauma varied with age and sex. In-hospital costs were especially high in patients with high injury severity, frailty and comorbidities. Age, female sex, injury severity, frailty, having comorbidities and having a hip fracture were independently associated with higher post-hospital health care costs. Conclusions: In-hospital health care costs were chiefly associated with high injury severity. Several patient and injury characteristics including age, high injury severity, frailty and comorbidity were associated with post-hospital health care costs. Both fall-related injuries and traffic-related injuries are important areas for prevention of injury in the older population.

, , , ,,
BMC Geriatrics
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

van der Vlegel, M., Haagsma, J.A., Geraerds, A., de Munter, L, de Jongh, M.A., & Polinder, S. (2020). Health care costs of injury in the older population: a prospective multicentre cohort study in the Netherlands. BMC Geriatrics, 20(1). doi:10.1186/s12877-020-01825-z