Department of Economics and Business Economics

Inequalities in Access to Treatment and Care for Patients with Dementia and Immigrant Background: A Danish Nationwide Study

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

DOI

  • Lea Stevnsborg, Department of Neurology, Danish Dementia Research Centre (DDRC), Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.
  • ,
  • Christina Jensen-Dahm, Danish Dementia Research Centre (DDRC), Department of Neurology, Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.
  • ,
  • Thomas R Nielsen, Department of Neurology, Danish Dementia Research Centre (DDRC), Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark., Denmark
  • Christiane Gasse
  • Gunhild Waldemar, Danish Dementia Research Centre (DDRC), Department of Neurology, Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.

BACKGROUND: Previous studies demonstrated lower quality diagnostic assessment of dementia in immigrant populations, but knowledge about the quality of treatment and care for dementia is still lacking.

OBJECTIVE: To conduct a nationwide registry-based study to determine whether inequality exists regarding access to anti-dementia treatment and care between immigrant and Danish-born patients with dementia.

METHODS: A cross-sectional register-based study was conducted in the entire elderly (60≥years) population with dementia in Denmark in 2012 (n = 34,877). The use of anti-dementia drugs and residency in a nursing home were compared among Danish-born and Western and non-Western immigrants with dementia. Logistic regression analysis was done with adjustment for age, sex, comorbidity, marital status, basis of inclusion, and time since dementia diagnosis.

RESULTS: Immigrant background was associated with a significantly lower likelihood of receiving anti-dementia drug therapy (odds ratio (OR) [95% confidence interval (CI)]): non-Western = 0.70 [0.56-0.87]; Western = 0.74 [0.63-0.87]). No significant differences were found in type or amount of anti-dementia medication dispensed between the population groups (proxy measure for adherence). Non-Western immigrants were significantly less likely to live in a nursing home (0.52 [0.41-0.65]).

CONCLUSION: This nationwide registry-based study indicated a worrisome difference in access to anti-dementia treatment and care for dementia patients with an immigrant background, but similar levels of adherence compared with the Danish-born population. Further research is necessary to pinpoint barriers to access to suitable healthcare among elderly immigrants with dementia but also to identify and develop culturally sensitive methods for their treatment and care.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Alzheimer's Disease
Volume54
Issue2
Pages (from-to)505-14
Number of pages10
ISSN1387-2877
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

    Research areas

  • Journal Article

See relations at Aarhus University Citationformats

ID: 107645128