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Health characteristics of Medicare traditional fee-for-service and Medicare Advantage enrollees: 1999-2004 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey linked to 2007 Medicare data



Health characteristics of Medicare traditional fee-for-service and Medicare Advantage enrollees: 1999-2004 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey linked to 2007 Medicare data



National Health Statistics Reports 2012(53): 1-12



National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) records have been linked to health care use and expenditure information from Medicare records. Claims data are generally available only for traditional fee-for-service (FFS) enrollees and not for Medicare Advantage enrollees. Differences in health characteristics between Medicare Advantage and traditional FFS enrollees could affect conclusions from analyses of the linked files that are restricted to traditional FFS enrollees. Data from the 1999-2004 NHANES linked to the 2007 Medicare enrollment data were analyzed. Using examination and interview data collected in NHANES, we compared health characteristics of Medicare beneficiaries aged 65 and over at the NHANES interview by their type of Medicare enrollment in 2007. We found that the overall percentage of Medicare beneficiaries who had hypertension at the time of the NHANES medical examination was lower for Medicare Advantage enrollees compared with traditional FFS enrollees; this was found for the non-Hispanic white population but not for other race and ethnicity groups. We found no statistically significant differences between Medicare Advantage and traditional FFS enrollees overall or within race and ethnicity groups for other health characteristics that were measured or reported at the time of the NHANES interview or medical examination in 1999-2004. Despite finding no large differences in health characteristics by Medicare enrollment in this analysis, users of the National Center for Health Statistics Medicare linked files should consider potential differences in health characteristics between Medicare Advantage and traditional FFS enrollees that could influence results limited to traditional FFS beneficiaries only.

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Accession: 053487827

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PMID: 22808695


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