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Arch Iran Med. 2022;25(4): 241-249.
doi: 10.34172/aim.2022.40
  Abstract View: 409
  PDF Download: 160

Original Article

Healthcare Utilization and Expenditures among Iranian Chemical Warfare Survivors Exposed to Sulfur Mustard

Parisa Mehdizadeh 1,2 ORCID logo, Mostafa Ghanei 3 ORCID logo, Abolghasem Pourreza 1* ORCID logo, Ali Akbari-sari 1 ORCID logo, Batool Mousavi 4, Rajabali Darroudi 1 ORCID logo

1 Department of Health Management and Economics, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
2 Health Management Research Center, Baqiyatallah University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
3 Chemical Injuries Research Center, Baqiyatallah University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
4 Prevention Department, Janbazan Medical and Engineering Research Center (JMERC), Tehran, Iran
*Corresponding Author: Corresponding Author: Abolghasem Pourreza, PhD; Department of Health Management and Economics, 4th Floor, New Building, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Postal Code: 1417613151, Iran. Tel:+98-2188989128; Fax:+98-2188989129; Email: , Email: abolghasemp@yahoo.com

Abstract

Background: This study aims to explore the healthcare utilization (HCU) and expenditures from complementary health insurance among Iranian people who survived sulfur mustard (SM) exposure during the Iran-Iraq war.

Methods: This study was conducted between March 21, 2018 and March 21, 2019 using secondary data. Data on the HCU and expenditure of war survivors after their exposure to SM were obtained from the Iran Veterans and Martyr Affair Foundation (VMAF) database and the national complementary insurance organization that covers their medical expenses. Multiple linear and zero-inflated poison regression (ZIP) models were used to estimate the costs and HCU. Analyses were performed in R software version 3.6.3.

Results: Among 58880 survivors who were included in study, 36383 (61.7%) used at least one service during a year. The total frequency of HCU was 15.6 services per person per year. The annual mean medical cost of each survivor was US$807.6 (±2901.2). The highest number of utilizations was related to medicine and physician visits. The highest median cost was related to rehabilitation (US$151.7), medical equipment (US$84.5), medicine (US$83.3) and inpatient services (US$ 48.8). With increasing age, disability, weight, severity of injury in lung or eye injuries, the rate of health service utilization rose significantly.

Conclusion: Over 30 years after the Iran-Iraq war, Iranian people who were exposed to SM and survived still suffer from injuries and pose a significant drain on healthcare resources.


Cite this article as: Mehdizadeh P, Ghanei M, Pourreza A, Akbari-sari A, Mousavi B, Darroudi R. Healthcare utilization and expenditures among iranian chemical warfare survivors exposed to sulfur mustard. Arch Iran Med. 2022;25(4):241-249. doi: 10.34172/aim.2022.40
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Submitted: 22 Dec 2020
Revision: 25 Sep 2021
Accepted: 04 Oct 2021
ePublished: 01 Apr 2022
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