Before 2010, nearly half of Americans did not recei
ve routine clinical preventive services that are known to save lives, researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Thursday.
Their analysis, detailed in a supplement to the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, examined how many people with vascular heart disease were prescribed aspirin or antiplatelet therapy to prevent heart disease (just 46%) and how many adults with hypertension had their blood pressure under control (just 43%). Only 28% of adults between 18 and 64 had received the seasonal influenza vaccine. Only 7.6% of tobacco users over 18 were prescribed tobacco cessation medication.
Respondents did a bit better taking care of cholesterol tests, with 70% of men and women over 20 for whom screening was recommended reporting having been screened in the last five years; and with diabetes management, which 87% of adults over 18 with diagnosed diabetes keeping glycohemoglobin (a measure of hemoglobin in the blood to which glucose is bound) at or less than 9%.
(Statistics, which were collected over varying periods of time, are summarized in a table on this MMWR webpage.)
“The findings of this report indicate that tens of millions of people in the United States have not been benefiting from key preventive clinical services, and that there are large disparities by demographics, geography, and health care coverage and access in the provision of these services,” wrote CDC director Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, in the report’s foreword.