The declining impact of race and insurance status on hormone replacement therapy MENOPAUSE-THE JOURNAL OF THE NORTH AMERICAN MENOPAUSE SOCIETY Stafford, R. S., Saglam, D., Causino, N., Blumenthal, D. 1998; 5 (3): 140-144


Socioeconomic barriers may limit the adoption of hormone replacement therapy, but little is known about recent trends in their influence. We evaluated trends in the impact of race and insurance status on national rates of hormone replacement therapy.We analyzed 32,608 physician office visits by nonpregnant women 40 years of age and older available from the 1989 through 1996 National Ambulatory Medical Care Surveys. The proportion of visits with new or continuing use of noncontraceptive estrogens reported was the main outcome measured. Multiple logistic regression was used to evaluate the independent effects of year, race, and expected payment source on hormone replacement therapy.Overall, the report of hormone replacement therapy increased from 5.7% of visits in 1989-1990 to 10.9% in 1995-1996. In 1989-1990, hormone replacement therapy was less likely in nonwhite women (3.6% vs. 6.3% for whites) and in women with Medicaid coverage (1.3% vs. 8.4% for privately insured women). These differences diminished over time, particularly for women without menopausal symptoms. In 1989-1990, the adjusted odds ratio of hormone replacement in women without menopausal symptoms was 0.31 (95% confidence interval 0.2-0.5) in nonwhites compared with whites, but increased to 0.57 (0.4-0.8) by 1995-1996. In 1989-1990, the adjusted odds ratio for hormone replacement among women with Medicaid was 0.31 (0.09-1.0) compared with those with private insurance. This ratio increased to 0.86 (0.5-1.4) by 1995-1996.Racial and payment source influences on hormone replacement therapy appeared to have lessened over time. Despite these changes substantial socioeconomic differences in treatment patterns remain to be addressed.

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View details for PubMedID 9774758