Racial disparities in the quality of care for enrollees in medicare managed care

  • Schneider E
  • Zaslavsky A
  • Epstein A
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Abstract

CONTEXT: Substantial racial disparities in the use of some health services exist; however, much less is known about racial disparities in the quality of care. OBJECTIVE: To assess racial disparities in the quality of care for enrollees in Medicare managed care health plans. DESIGN AND SETTING: Observational study, using the 1998 Health Plan Employer Data and Information Set (HEDIS), which summarized performance in calendar year 1997 for 4 measures of quality of care (breast cancer screening, eye examinations for patients with diabetes, beta-blocker use after myocardial infarction, and follow-up after hospitalization for mental illness). PARTICIPANTS: A total of 305 574 (7.7%) beneficiaries who were enrolled in Medicare managed care health plans had data for at least 1 of the 4 HEDIS measures and were aged 65 years or older. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Rates of breast cancer screening, eye examinations for patients with diabetes, beta-blocker use after myocardial infarction, and follow-up after hospitalization for mental illness. RESULTS: Blacks were less likely than whites to receive breast cancer screening (62.9% vs 70.9%; P

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Authors

  • Eric C. Schneider

  • Alan M. Zaslavsky

  • Arnold M. Epstein

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