Social determinants of health (SDOH) are associated with increased Medicare spending per beneficiary in certain geographic areas, according to a study from the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Addressing social determinants of health in these regions can potentially lead to reduced healthcare spending and better quality healthcare. The results show that Medicare spending was higher in geographic locations where residents had greater rates of SDOH.
The study looked at 3,038 counties across the country, examining Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) spending data, patient demographics, and SDOH measurements. The data was obtained from the 2017 CMS geographic variation public use file. Medicare spending included all services for Medicare Parts A and B.