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Patient characteristics and trends in nontraumatic dental condition visits to emergency departments in the United States. Clin Cosmet Investig Dent 2012;4:1-7 PMID: 23674919 PMCID: PMC3652363

Pubmed ID

23674919

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: We examined trends and patient characteristics for non-traumatic dental condition (NTDC) visits to emergency departments (EDs), and compared them to other ED visit types, specifically non-dental ambulatory care sensitive conditions (non-dental ACSCs) and non-ambulatory care sensitive conditions (non-ACSCs) in the United States.

METHODS: We analyzed data from the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care survey (NHAMCS) for 1997 to 2007. We performed descriptive statistics and used a multivariate multinomial logistic regression to examine the odds of one of the three visit types occurring at an ED. All analyses were adjusted for the survey design.

RESULTS: NTDC visits accounted for 1.4% of all ED visits with a 4% annual rate of increase (from 1.0% in 1997 to 1.7% in 2007). Self-pay patients (32%) and Medicaid enrollees (27%) were over-represented among NTDC visits compared to non-dental ACSC and non-ACSC visits (P < 0.0001). Females consistently accounted for over 50% of all types of ED visits examined. Compared to whites, Hispanics had significantly lower odds of an NDTC visit versus other visit types (P < 0.0001). Blacks had significantly lower odds of making NDTC visits when compared to non-dental ACSC visits only (P < 0.0001). Compared to private insurance enrollees, Medicaid and self-pay patients had 2-3 times the odds of making NTDC visits compared to other visit types.

CONCLUSION: Nationally, NTDC visits to emergency departments increased over time. Medicaid and self-pay patients had significantly higher odds of making NDTC visits.

Author List

Okunseri C, Okunseri E, Thorpe JM, Xiang Q, Szabo A

Authors

Christopher Okunseri DDS,MS Associate Professor and Director in the Clinical Services department at Marquette University
Aniko Szabo PhD Associate Professor in the Institute for Health and Equity department at Medical College of Wisconsin




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