Demographics and Durable Medical Equipment Needs of Persons With Disabilities in a Charitable Rehabilitation Clinic

Claudia I. Martinez, Ashley N. Sanchez, Argyrios Stampas, Jean Woo, Monica Verduzco-Gutierrez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

ABSTRACT: This study characterizes the demographics and durable medical equipment needs of persons with disabilities to improve utilization and management of resources at a philanthropic rehabilitation clinic. Paper charts from all encounters between 2013 and 2018 were reviewed. Data collected include sex, age, ethnicity, insurance status, diagnoses, and durable medical equipment requested/received. Paper charts that were incomplete or illegible were excluded. Among 763 individuals, there were 1157 encounters for durable medical equipment requests. Forty-six percent of individuals were uninsured. Thirty-seven percent had federal insurance such as Medicare or Medicaid, and 6% private insurance. Fifty-five percent of individuals were Hispanic, 28% African American, and 14% White. Fifty-six percent of encounters were with individuals with a neurological diagnosis, 18% medical diagnosis, 17% musculoskeletal/autoimmune diagnosis, 6% amputation diagnosis, and 3% cancer diagnosis. Of the 2680 items distributed, 34% were wheelchair parts and repair, 30% personal hygiene/incontinence supplies, 25% mobility equipment, and 11% bathroom equipment. Of the 513 unmet items requested, 49% were mobility equipment, 24% wheelchair parts and repair, 17% personal hygiene/incontinence supplies, and 11% bathroom equipment. More than a third (43%) of durable medical equipment requests were from individuals with either private insurance or federal payers, which implies lack of adequate coverage on durable medical equipment to maintain mobility and independence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)288-291
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican journal of physical medicine & rehabilitation
Volume100
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation

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