Objective: Atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are among the leading causes of morbidity, mortality, and economic burden in the United States (US). While previous reports have shown that an optimal cardiovascular risk factor (CRF) profile is associated with improved outcomes among COPD patients, the impact of ASCVD and CRF on healthcare costs and resource utilization is not well described.
Methods: The Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) database was used from 2011 to 2016 to study healthcare expenditure for COPD patients with and without ASCVD and across CRF profiles in a nationally representative population of adults in the United States.
Results: The study population consisted of 14,807 adults with COPD, representing 28 million cases annually. Presence of ASCVD was associated with higher reported expenditure across the spectrum of CRF profiles among those with COPD. On average, after adjusting for confounders, presence of ASCVD represented a mean difference per capita of $5438 (95% CI $4121 - $6754; p < 0.001). Mean per capita expenditures were significantly higher comparing poor vs optimal CRF profiles, with marginal expenditures of $8552 and $6531 among those with and without ASCVD, respectively. When comparing individuals with ASCVD and poor CRF profile versus individuals without ASCVD and optimal CRF profile, those in the latter group used 13% fewer prescription medications and required 24% fewer hospitalizations. Furthermore, an optimal CRF profile was associated with lower odds of most sources of healthcare utilization regardless of ASCVD status.
Conclusion: An absence of ASCVD and a favorable CRF profile was associated with lower healthcare expenditure and resource utilization among patients with COPD. These results provide robust estimates for potential healthcare savings as preemptive strategies continue to become integrated into new healthcare delivery models, for increased awareness and the need for improvement of CRF profiles among high-risk patients.