Population Dynamics in the Elderly: The Need for Age-Adjustment in National BioSurveillance Systems
With the growing threat of pandemic influenza, efforts to improve national surveillance to better predict and prevent this disease from affecting the most vulnerable populations are being undertaken. This paper examines the utility of Medicare data to obtain age-specific influenza hospitalization rates for historical analyses. We present a novel approach to describing and analyzing age-specific patterns of hospitalizations using Medicare data and show the implications of a dynamic population age distribution on hospitalization rates. We use these techniques to highlight the utility of implementing a real-time nationwide surveillance system for influenza cases and vaccination, and discuss opportunities to improve the existing system to inform policy and reduce the burden of influenza nationwide.
Keywordsreal-time surveillance influenza age-adjustment elderly Medicare
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Farley, D.O., et al.: Trends in Special Medicare Payments and Service Utilization for Rural Areas in the 1990s. RAND (June 2002)Google Scholar
- 2.Horiuchi, S., et al.: Differential Patterns of Age-related Mortality Increase in Middle Age and Old Age. J. Gerontol. A Biol. Sci. Med. Sci. 58, 495–507 (2003)Google Scholar
- 4.McElhany, J.E.: Influenza: A Preventable Lethal Disease. J. Gerontol. A Biol. Sci. Med. Sci. 57, M627–M628 (2002)Google Scholar
- 5.Meltzer, M.I., Cox, N.J., Fukuda, K.: The Economic Impact of Pandemic Influenza in the United States: Priorities for Intervention. Emerg. Infect. Dis. 5, 659–671 (1999)Google Scholar
- 7.Naumova, E.N., et al.: The Spatiotemporal Dynamics of Influenza Hospitalizations in the United States Elderly. In preparationGoogle Scholar
- 12.Smith, N.M., et al.: Prevention and Control of Influenza: Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). MMWR Recomm. Rep. 55, 1–42 (2006)Google Scholar
- 15.US Census Bureau: American Community Survey Gulf Coast Area Data Profiles: Louisiana Data Profiles (2005), http://www.census.gov/acs/www/Products/Profiles/gulf_coast/tables/tab1_katrina04000US22v.htm Accessed 3/12/07