Methodological issues on the use of administrative data in healthcare research: The case of heart failure hospitalizations in Lombardy region, 2000 to 2012

Cristina Mazzali, Anna Maria Paganoni, Francesca Ieva, Cristina Masella, Mauro Maistrello, Ornella Agostoni, Simonetta Scalvini, Maria Frigerio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Administrative data are increasingly used in healthcare research. However, in order to avoid biases, their use requires careful study planning. This paper describes the methodological principles and criteria used in a study on epidemiology, outcomes and process of care of patients hospitalized for heart failure (HF) in the largest Italian Region, from 2000 to 2012. Methods: Data were extracted from the administrative data warehouse of the healthcare system of Lombardy, Italy. Hospital discharge forms with HF-related diagnosis codes were the basis for identifying HF hospitalizations as clinical events, or episodes. In patients experiencing at least one HF event, hospitalizations for any cause, outpatient services utilization, and drug prescriptions were also analyzed. Results: Seven hundred one thousand, seven hundred one heart failure events involving 371,766 patients were recorded from 2000 to 2012. Once all the healthcare services provided to these patients after the first HF event had been joined together, the study database totalled about 91 million records. Principles, criteria and tips utilized in order to minimize errors and characterize some relevant subgroups are described. Conclusions: The methodology of this study could represent the basis for future research and could be applied in similar studies concerning epidemiology, trend analysis, and healthcare resources utilization.

Original languageEnglish
Article number234
JournalBMC Health Services Research
Volume16
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 8 2016

Fingerprint

Health Services Research
Hospitalization
Heart Failure
Delivery of Health Care
Epidemiology
Drug Prescriptions
Ambulatory Care
Italy
Patient Care
Databases

Keywords

  • Administrative databases
  • Comorbidity
  • Epidemiological studies
  • Healthcare services utilization
  • Heart failure
  • High dimensional data methods

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy

Cite this

Methodological issues on the use of administrative data in healthcare research : The case of heart failure hospitalizations in Lombardy region, 2000 to 2012. / Mazzali, Cristina; Paganoni, Anna Maria; Ieva, Francesca; Masella, Cristina; Maistrello, Mauro; Agostoni, Ornella; Scalvini, Simonetta; Frigerio, Maria.

In: BMC Health Services Research, Vol. 16, No. 1, 234, 08.07.2016.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Mazzali, Cristina ; Paganoni, Anna Maria ; Ieva, Francesca ; Masella, Cristina ; Maistrello, Mauro ; Agostoni, Ornella ; Scalvini, Simonetta ; Frigerio, Maria. / Methodological issues on the use of administrative data in healthcare research : The case of heart failure hospitalizations in Lombardy region, 2000 to 2012. In: BMC Health Services Research. 2016 ; Vol. 16, No. 1.
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