To examine sociodemographic factors and chronic health conditions of people living with HIV (PLWHIV/HIV+) at least 65 years old and compare their chronic disease prevalence with beneficiaries without HIV.
National fee-for-service Medicare claims data (parts A and B) from 2006 to 2009 were used to create a retrospective cohort of beneficiaries at least 65 years old.
Beneficiaries with an inpatient or skilled nursing facility claim, or outpatient claims with HIV diagnosis codes were considered HIV+. HIV+ beneficiaries were compared with uninfected beneficiaries on demographic factors and on the prevalence of hypertension, hyperlipidemia, ischemic heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis/osteoarthritis, and diabetes. Odds ratios (OR), 95% confidence intervals (CIs), and P values were calculated. Adjustment variables included age, sex, race/ethnicity, end stage renal disease (ESRD), and dual Medicare-Medicaid enrollment. Chronic conditions were examined individually and as an index from zero to all five conditions.
Of 29 060 418 eligible beneficiaries, 24 735 (0.09%) were HIV+. HIV+ beneficiaries were more likely to be Hispanic, African-American, male, and younger (P > 0.0001) and were 1.5-2.1 times as likely to have a chronic disease [diabetes (adjusted OR) 1.51, 95% CI (1.47, 1.55): rheumatoid arthritis/osteoarthritis 2.14, 95% CI (2.08, 2.19)], and 2.4-7 times as likely to have 1-5 comorbid chronic conditions [1 condition (adjusted OR) 2.38, 95% CI (2.21, 2.57): 5 conditions 7.07, 95% CI (6.61, 7.56)].
Our results show that PLWHIV at least 65 years old are at higher risk of comorbidities than other fee-for-service Medicare beneficiaries. This finding has implications for the cost and health management of PLWHIV 65 years and older.