Men With Heart Disease and Diabetes Get Better Care Than Women


By: Linda von Wartburg

A study just published by the RAND Corporation, a well-known thinktank, has found that routine care received by women for their heartdisease and diabetes isn't as good as that received by men.

And thetreatments aren't expensive; they're just low-cost treatments thatcan forestall serious future problems.

The care received by more than 50,000 men and women, enrolled in tencommercial insurance plans and nine Medicare plans in 1999, wasassessed. Eleven tests, treatments, and measurements of health wereexamined, all of them important to the care of people with heartdisease or diabetes. For diabetes patients, the researchers lookedat whether A1c's, LDL (bad cholesterol), nephropathy, and eyes werechecked.

Among people with commercial health plans, women were significantlyless likely to receive six of the eleven measures. Women withMedicare were less likely to receive four of the eleven measures.For instance, women were less likely to be prescribed ACE(angiotensin-converting enzyme) inhibitors for congestive heartfailure and beta blockers following a heart attack.

The largest disparity was for control of LDL among people with diabetes, where women were 19% less likely to achieve control among Medicareenrollees and 16% less likely among commercial enrollees.

Source: RAND Corporation



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