Title: Difference in healthcare usage, pharmacy prescriptions, and healthcare cost for Special Olympic athletes compared to non-athletes with intellectual disabilities.
Legend: Top Right – Comparison of the average number of healthcare visits, billed healthcare costs, and paid healthcare costs per person across 2007 – 2017 for people with intellectual disability in WI who were either a Special Olympics WI (SOWI) athlete or who did not participate in SOWI. SOWI athletes had fewer claims, lower costs billed and lower paid costs. Top Left – Comparison of the average number of pharmacy claims (medication) per person across 2007-2017 for SOWI athletes and people with intellectual disabilities in WI who did not participate in SOWI. SOWI athletes had fewer pharmacy claims. Bottom Right – Comparison of the average number of healthcare claims per person annually between 2007-2017 for SOWI athletes and people with intellectual disabilities in WI who did not participate in SOWI. SOWI athletes had fewer healthcare claims per person on average for every year. Bottom Left – Comparison of the average number of healthcare visits and average number of pharmacy (medication) claims per person across 2007-2017 for SOWI athletes and SOWI Athletes who participated in additional health education or screening through the Special Olympics Healthy Athletes Program. Individuals who participated in Healthy Athletes screening or education had fewer healthcare visits and fewer pharmacy claims.
Citation: Al-Heizein, M., St. John, B. M., DuBois, L., Niemeier, B., Ausderau, K. K. (in-press). Difference in healthcare usage, pharmacy prescriptions, and healthcare cost for Special Olympic athletes compared to non-athletes with intellectual disabilities. Journal of Policy and Practice in Intellectual Disabilities.
Abstract: Objectives – Examine healthcare usage, pharmacy prescriptions and healthcare cost among people with Intellectual Disability in Wisconsin who participate in Special Olympics compared to people with Intellectual Disability who do not participate in Special Olympics. In addition, a sub-analysis was completed to compare Special Olympics athletes who participated in the Healthy Athlete program to those who had not. Methods – Ten years of data were extracted based on active claim and identification. Final analyses included non‐ Special Olympic participants and Special Olympics Wisconsin athletes for healthcare and pharmacy. Results – Special Olympics Wisconsin athletes who participated in the Healthy Athlete program had significantly lower healthcare and pharmacy usage, and cost than Special Olympics Wisconsin athletes who did not participate controlling for race, ethnicity, and age. Conclusions – Public health programs may have variable levels of effectiveness when addressing health disparities for people with Intellectual Disability.
About the Lab: Karla Ausderau’s research focuses on families and children with ASD. She studies daily occupations, specifically eating and mealtimes, to elucidate the impact on the child’s health, family wellness, and overall daily participation. In addition, she studies sensory features in children with ASD, including their development, characterization, and impact on daily participation. With better characterization of feeding and sensory behaviors and understanding their influence on daily participation, Ausderau hopes to be able to develop more effective assessment tools, targeted treatment strategies, and improved outcomes for children and families.