Hospital service use for young people with chronic health conditions: a population-based matched retrospective cohort study

Rebecca J. Mitchell*, Anne McMaugh, Geoffrey Herkes, Nusrat Homaira, Tien-Ming Hng, Cate M. Cameron, Reidar P. Lystad

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Aim: This study aims to identify the hospitalised morbidity associated with three common chronic health conditions among young people using a population-based matched cohort.

Methods: A population-level matched case-comparison retrospective cohort study of young people aged ≤18 years hospitalised with asthma, type 1 diabetes (T1D) or epilepsy during 2005–2018 in New South Wales, Australia using linked birth, health and mortality records. The comparison cohort was matched on age, sex and residential postcode. Adjusted rate ratios (ARR) were calculated by sex and age group.

Results: There were 65 055 young people hospitalised with asthma, 6648 with epilepsy, and 2209 with T1D. Young people with epilepsy (ARR 10.95; 95% confidence interval (CI) 9.98–12.02), T1D (ARR 8.64; 95% CI 7.72–9.67) or asthma (ARR 4.39; 95% CI 4.26–4.53) all had a higher risk of hospitalisation than matched peers. Admission risk was highest for males (ARR 11.00; 95% CI 9.64–12.56) and females with epilepsy (ARR 10.83; 95% CI 9.54–12.29) compared to peers. The highest admission risk by age group was for young people aged 10–14 years (ARR 5.50; 95% CI 4.77–6.34) living with asthma, children aged ≤4 years (ARR 12.68; 95% CI 11.35–14.17) for those living with epilepsy, and children aged 5–9 years (ARR 9.12; 95% CI 7.69–10.81) for those living with T1D compared to peers.

Conclusions: The results will guide health service planning and highlight opportunities for better management of chronic health conditions, such as further care integration between acute, primary and community health services for young people.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1439-1446
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Paediatrics and Child Health
Issue number8
Early online date31 May 2022
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2022. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • asthma
  • epilepsy
  • hospitalisation
  • type 1 diabetes


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