Patterns of ICD-9 diagnoses among adolescents using school-based clinics: diagnostic categories by school level and gender.
- PubMed: 8777196
PURPOSE: Understanding utilization patterns in school clinics is important in discerning potential health outcomes among adolescents. This study reports on high-middle school and gender differences in ICD-9 diagnostic codes for students using Baltimore school clinics in the academic year 1989-90. METHODS: 12,953 visits resulted in 17,241 individual diagnoses. Data were grouped into 17 major diagnostic categories, subcategories for reproductive health and mental health, and 20 sentinel diagnoses. RESULTS: Reproductive health diagnoses were most common for high school clinics (28% of all diagnoses). Mental health (psychosocial) diagnoses were most common for middle school clinics (30%). Adolescent women were much more likely to use clinics for reproductive health care needs than adolescent men. Adolescent men and women used the clinics with equal frequency for mental health, although specific diagnoses varied considerably by gender. CONCLUSIONS: This overview of diagnostic patterns among adolescents using Baltimore's school-based clinics provides a unique view of differences in health care needs between younger and older teens and between male and female teens. These data have meaningful implications for clinic staffing and enhanced outreach efforts.