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Health service use among children with and without eczema, asthma, and hay fever

Authors Hammer-Helmich L, Linneberg A, Francis Thomsen S, Tang L, Glümer C

Received 4 May 2016

Accepted for publication 13 June 2016

Published 13 September 2016 Volume 2016:8 Pages 341—349

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/CLEP.S111960

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Amy Norman

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Vera Ehrenstein


Lene Hammer-Helmich,1,2 Allan Linneberg,1,3,4 Simon Francis Thomsen,5,6 Line Tang,1 Charlotte Glümer1,7

1
Research Center for Prevention and Health, The Capital Region of Denmark, Copenhagen, 2Department of Real World Evidence and Epidemiology, H. Lundbeck A/S, Valby, 3Department of Clinical Experimental Research, Rigshospitalet, 4Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, 5Department of Dermatology, Bispebjerg Hospital, 6Department of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, 7Department of Health Science and Technology, Faculty of Medicine, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark

Background: Atopic diseases, for example, eczema, asthma, and hay fever, are among the most common chronic diseases of childhood. Knowledge on health service use among children with atopic disease is limited. This study aimed to investigate the total use and costs of health services for children with and without eczema, asthma, and hay fever in a Danish general population.
Methods: We conducted a health survey with four complete birth cohorts from the City of Copenhagen. Individual questionnaire data on eczema, asthma, and hay fever for children aged 3, 6, 11, and 15 years were linked to register information on use and costs of health services and prescribed medication and parental education. In total 9,720 children participated (50.5%).
Results: We found increased health service use (number of additional consultations per year [95% confidence interval]) among children with current eczema symptoms (1.77 [1.29–2.26]), current asthma symptoms (2.53 [2.08–2.98]), and current hay fever symptoms (1.21 [0.74–1.67]), compared with children without these symptoms. We also found increased use of prescribed medication and most subtypes of health services. Current asthma symptoms and current eczema symptoms, but not current hay fever symptoms, increased the health service costs with at least €300 per year per child.
Conclusion: Children with eczema, asthma, and hay fever used health services and prescribed medication more than children without these diseases.

Keywords: asthma, atopic dermatitis, costs, hay fever, health services

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