Nav: Home

Kidney disease patients have higher out-of-pocket costs than stroke and cancer patients

January 17, 2017

MAYWOOD, IL - Patients who have chronic kidney disease but are not on dialysis have higher out-of-pocket healthcare expenses than even stroke and cancer patients, according to a study by researchers at Loyola University Chicago and Loyola Medicine.

Chronic kidney disease patients paid a median $1,439 in annual out-of-pocket costs, compared with $770 for cancer patients and $748 for stroke patients. Patients who did not have chronic kidney disease, cancer or stroke spent $226 on out-of-pocket costs. The study was published in the journal BMC Nephrology.

Out-of-pocket spending includes coinsurance, deductibles and payments for services, supplies and other items not covered by insurance.

More than 20 million people - about 10 percent of U.S. adults - have non-dialysis dependent chronic kidney disease, and nearly one of every two adults aged 30 to 64 are expected to develop kidney disease during their lifetimes. Most people with kidney disease have other health problems, such as diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease, and consequently see many doctors and take multiple medications.

While previous studies have examined the total healthcare costs of kidney disease, this Loyola study is unique in also examining out-of-pocket costs. Chronic kidney disease patients spent 7.2 percent of their personal income on out-of-pocket costs, compared with 5.8 percent for stroke patients, 5.1 percent for cancer patients and 1.9 percent for people who did not have stroke, cancer or kidney disease.

"Higher out-of-pocket cost burden can impede efforts to prevent disease progression," corresponding author Talar Markossian, PhD, MPH, and colleagues wrote. "Previous research has shown that some patients opt to not fill prescriptions or take less than the prescribed amount due to out-of-pocket costs." Markossian is an assistant professor in the Department of Public Health Sciences of Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine.

The study found that chronic kidney disease patients have a high prevalence of "comorbidities" (other chronic health problems): 87.8 percent also had high blood pressure, 85 percent had high cholesterol, 63.7 percent had arthritis and 49.6 percent had diabetes.

Previous studies found that kidney disease patients have an average of 10.8 physician visits per year and more than 60 percent of patients with stage 3 kidney disease take five or more medications per day.

"The high total number of physician visits and medications required for chronic kidney disease care drives up total direct healthcare expenditures and likely also increases out-of-pocket expenditures, creating a financial burden for patients," researchers wrote.

Researchers examined surveys of 74,267adults who participated in the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) from 2011 to 2013. MEPS is an annual household survey of the noninstitutionalized population.

The study looked at total and out-of-pocket healthcare expenditures for chronic kidney disease (excluding dialysis patients); cancer (colon, breast or lung); and stroke. Total healthcare expenditures were the amounts covered by insurance plus the patients' out-of-pocket costs.

Chronic kidney disease patients had median total healthcare expenditures, including insurance payments, of $12,877, compared with $8,150 for stroke patients, $7,428 for cancer patients and $1,189 for patients who did not have kidney disease, stroke or cancer.
In addition to Markossian, other co-authors of the study are Loyola medical student Christina Small (first author), Holly J. Kramer, MD, MPH, Karen A. Griffin, MD, Kavitha Vellanki, MD, David J. Leehey, MD, and Vinold K. Bansal, MD.

The study is titled "Non-Dialysis Dependent Chronic Kidney Disease is Associated with High Total and Out-of-Pocket Healthcare Expenditures."

Loyola University Health System

Related Cancer Articles:

Stress in cervical cancer patients associated with higher risk of cancer-specific mortality
Psychological stress was associated with a higher risk of cancer-specific mortality in women diagnosed with cervical cancer.
Cancer-sniffing dogs 97% accurate in identifying lung cancer, according to study in JAOA
The next step will be to further fractionate the samples based on chemical and physical properties, presenting them back to the dogs until the specific biomarkers for each cancer are identified.
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers identify one way T cell function may fail in cancer
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers have discovered a mechanism by which one type of immune cell, CD8+ T cells, can become dysfunctional, impeding its ability to seek and kill cancer cells.
More cancer survivors, fewer cancer specialists point to challenge in meeting care needs
An aging population, a growing number of cancer survivors, and a projected shortage of cancer care providers will result in a challenge in delivering the care for cancer survivors in the United States if systemic changes are not made.
New cancer vaccine platform a potential tool for efficacious targeted cancer therapy
Researchers at the University of Helsinki have discovered a solution in the form of a cancer vaccine platform for improving the efficacy of oncolytic viruses used in cancer treatment.
More Cancer News and Cancer Current Events

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Rethinking Anger
Anger is universal and complex: it can be quiet, festering, justified, vengeful, and destructive. This hour, TED speakers explore the many sides of anger, why we need it, and who's allowed to feel it. Guests include psychologists Ryan Martin and Russell Kolts, writer Soraya Chemaly, former talk radio host Lisa Fritsch, and business professor Dan Moshavi.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#537 Science Journalism, Hold the Hype
Everyone's seen a piece of science getting over-exaggerated in the media. Most people would be quick to blame journalists and big media for getting in wrong. In many cases, you'd be right. But there's other sources of hype in science journalism. and one of them can be found in the humble, and little-known press release. We're talking with Chris Chambers about doing science about science journalism, and where the hype creeps in. Related links: The association between exaggeration in health related science news and academic press releases: retrospective observational study Claims of causality in health news: a randomised trial This...