Trends in Health Care Utilization Among United States Children With Eczema by Age, Sex, Race, and Hispanic Ethnicity: National Health Interview Survey 2006-2018

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Journal Article

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Dermatitis : contact, atopic, occupational, drug








Higher health care utilization has been proven among US children with eczema than those without, but disparities may exist among sociodemographic subgroups. To determine health care utilization trends among children with eczema across sociodemographic factors. We included children (0-17 years old) from the US National Health Interview Survey 2006-2018. We calculated the survey-weighted health care utilization by determining proportion of children attending a well-child checkup, seen by a medical specialist, and seen by a mental health professional in the previous 12 months for children with and without eczema, by race (white, black, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian, and multiracial), Hispanic ethnicity (yes/no), age (0-5, 6-10, 11-17), and gender (male/female) subgroups using SPSS complex samples. Joinpoint regression was used to estimate piecewise log-linear trends in the survey-weighted prevalence, annual percentage change, and disparities between subgroups. We included 149,379 children-there was higher health care utilization in children with eczema than those without. However, when comparing the average annual percentage change (AAPC), white children had a significantly higher AAPC of "attending a well-child checkup" than black children. In addition, only white children showed a significantly increasing trend in being "seen by a medical specialist," whereas all other minority race subgroups had stagnant trends. For those "seen by a mental health professional," there were increasing trends only in the male and non-Hispanic subgroups out of all the sociodemographic subgroups. Improving awareness among primary care physicians to refer children with moderate-to-severe eczema to medical specialists (eg, allergists, dermatologists, and mental health/attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder professionals) when necessary could improve quality of life and reduce emergency department visits-especially among minority race, Hispanic, and female children.