Australian Journal of Primary Health Australian Journal of Primary Health Society
The issues influencing community health services and primary health care
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Uptake, prevalence and predictors of first-time use for the 75+ Health Assessment Scheme

Xenia Dolja-Gore A , Meredith Tavener A D , Tazeen Majeed A , Balakrishnan R. Nair B C and Julie E. Byles A
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A Research Centre for Generational Health and Ageing, University of Newcastle, HMRI Building, Level 4, Lot 1 Kookaburra Circuit, New Lambton Heights, NSW 2305, Australia.

B School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW 2308, Australia.

C Hunter New England Local Health District, John Hunter Hospital, New Lambton Heights, NSW 2305, Australia.

D Corresponding author. Email: meredith.tavener@newcastle.edu.au

Australian Journal of Primary Health 23(5) 476-481 https://doi.org/10.1071/PY16108
Submitted: 31 August 2016  Accepted: 5 April 2017   Published: 16 June 2017

Abstract

In 1999, the Australian Federal Government introduced Medicare items for Health Assessments for people aged 75 years and older (75+ health assessments). This research examined uptake of these assessments and identified predictors of use by women from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health (ALSWH). Assessments were identified for each year from 1999 to 2013 using linked Medicare data. Time to first assessment was examined, as well as social and health factors associated with having an assessment. From 1999 to 2013, 61.8% of women had at least one assessment. Almost one-third had an assessment within 2 years of their introduction, 25% of women died before having an assessment and 13% survived but did not have an assessment. Factors associated with assessment included being widowed, private health insurance, marital status, education, having arthritis and urinary incontinence, and less difficulty managing on income. Many women never received an assessment, and many only received one. Promotion of the 75+ health assessments is necessary among older women to increase uptake.

Additional keywords: ageing, Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health, Medicare, women.


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