Utilisation of healthcare services for respiratory tract infections in patients with and without diabetes in Qatar: a cross-sectional study
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People with diabetes mellitus have a high risk of acquiring respiratory tract infections (RTIs), yet little is known about their utilisation of healthcare services compared with people without diabetes. This study aimed to compare the utilisation of healthcare services for RTIs between individuals with and without diabetes attending primary healthcare centres (PHCCs) in Qatar. A retrospective cross-sectional study was conducted using an electronic database of all individuals who had a diagnosis of RTI. PHCCs in Qatar from July 2015 to December 2017. Participants in the study were all adult individuals (aged ≥18 years) who visited the primary healthcare facilities and were diagnosed with an RTI during the study period. For each participant, visits to the healthcare facility, antibiotic use and use of other medications were extracted from the electronic database and compared between participants with and without a diabetes diagnosis. A total of 32 857 participants were included, of whom 7407 (22.5%) had a diabetes diagnosis. Results from a negative binomial regression indicate that diabetes diagnosis was significantly associated with increased visits to the healthcare facility (incidence rate ratio (IRR) 1.10, 95% CI 1.076 to 1.134, p<0.001), antibiotic use (IRR 1.09, 95% CI 1.046 to 1.145, p<0.001) and use of other medications (IRR 1.11, 95% CI 1.078 to 1.143, p<0.001). A diabetes diagnosis among patients with RTI was associated with higher utilisation of healthcare services. Given the added costs to the healthcare system, prevention of diabetes will have additional benefits to the healthcare system, apart from diabetes-associated costs alone.
- Public Health [145 items ]