Use of health services by remote dwelling Aboriginal infants in tropical northern Australia: a retrospective cohort study

Bar-Zeev, Sarah J., Kruske, Sue G., Barclay, Lesley M., Bar-Zeev, Naor H., Carapetis, Jonathan R. and Kildea, Sue V. (2012) Use of health services by remote dwelling Aboriginal infants in tropical northern Australia: a retrospective cohort study. BMC Pediatrics, 12 19.1-19.8. doi:10.1186/1471-2431-12-19


Author Bar-Zeev, Sarah J.
Kruske, Sue G.
Barclay, Lesley M.
Bar-Zeev, Naor H.
Carapetis, Jonathan R.
Kildea, Sue V.
Title Use of health services by remote dwelling Aboriginal infants in tropical northern Australia: a retrospective cohort study
Journal name BMC Pediatrics   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1471-2431
Publication date 2012-02-28
Year available 2012
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1186/1471-2431-12-19
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 12
Start page 19.1
End page 19.8
Total pages 8
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher BioMed Central
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background: Australia is a wealthy developed country. However, there are significant disparities in health outcomes for Aboriginal infants compared with other Australian infants. Health outcomes tend to be worse for those living in remote areas. Little is known about the health service utilisation patterns of remote dwelling Aboriginal infants. This study describes health service utilisation patterns at the primary and referral level by remote dwelling Aboriginal infants from northern Australia.

Results: Data on 413 infants were analysed. Following birth, one third of infants were admitted to the regional hospital neonatal nursery, primarily for preterm birth. Once home, most (98%) health service utilisation occurred at the remote primary health centre, infants presented to the centre about once a fortnight (mean 28 presentations per year, 95%CI 26.4-30.0). Half of the presentations were for new problems, most commonly for respiratory, skin and gastrointestinal symptoms. Remaining presentations were for reviews or routine health service provision. By one year of age 59% of infants were admitted to hospital at least once, the rate of hospitalisation per infant year was 1.1 (95%CI 0.9-1.2).

Conclusions: The hospitalisation rate is high and admissions commence early in life, visits to the remote primary health centre are frequent. Half of all presentations are for new problems. These findings have important implications for health service planning and delivery to remote dwelling Aboriginal families. 
Keyword Pediatrics
Pediatrics
PEDIATRICS
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work Publications
 
Versions
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 11 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 11 times in Scopus Article | Citations
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Fri, 23 May 2014, 21:45:08 EST by Vicki Percival on behalf of School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work