Sociodemographic Variations in Healthcare Utilization Patterns During the COVID-19 Pandemic (81191)

Session Information:

Friday, 24 May 2024 15:30
Session: Poster Session 1
Room: Orion Hall (5F)
Presentation Type: Poster Presentation

All presentation times are UTC + 9 (Asia/Tokyo)

During the COVID-19 pandemic, global medical utilization decreased due to risk perception and anxiety of infection, potentially resulting in diagnostic and treatment delays and consequent health risks. This study examined variations in medical utilization before and during the pandemic across different sociodemographic groups and analyzed trends amid the prolonged pandemic. Total outpatient claims data from 2017 to 2021 of a 10% random sample of the Korean population were used for the analysis. Average annual outpatient frequencies and costs pre- and during COVID-19 were compared based on individual sociodemographic characteristics. Interrupted time series (ITS) analysis was conducted to evaluate the significance of pre- and post-pandemic changes. In 2020, outpatient frequency decreased across all demographics, with a partial recovery observed in 2021, though it remained below pre-pandemic trends. Outpatient costs generally remained not decreasing, exhibiting lower annual increase rates during the pandemic. ITS analysis identified significant reductions in outpatient frequency among individuals over 40 and medical aid recipients in 2020 compared to pre-pandemic trends. Similarly, significant decreases in outpatient costs were observed among men, individuals in their 30s, and those with higher incomes in 2020. However, these trends did not persist into 2021. There were sociodemographic differences in changes in healthcare use during the pandemic. A comprehensive analysis of long-term healthcare use and outcomes among population showing significant changes is needed to better prepare for future infectious disease outbreaks.

Nan-He Yoon, Wonkwang University, South Korea

About the Presenter(s)
Professor NAN-HE YOON is a University Assistant Professor/Lecturer at Wonkwang University in South Korea

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Posted by Clive Staples Lewis

Last updated: 2023-02-23 23:45:00