COVID-19 Data Briefs

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Commercial and Medicare Covid-19 Patient Co-Morbidities

For the past few months, Perception Health has analyzed the medical claims records of Covid-19 patients. There are 225,810 patients covered by commercial health insurance in this database.

We filtered these de-identified patient records against our vast data warehouse of medical claims records to create more robust patient histories. We then compared the medical histories of these Covid-19 patients to the histories of 100,000 patients randomly selected from 2019 commercial claims records, which we set as our population baseline.

In addition, we recently received medical claims records from CMS with information about 326,674 Covid-19 patients who receive Medicare. We analyzed the Medicare patients to segment the group by Race and Gender. We then totaled the Medicare patients by their instances of chronic diseases and compared these figures to the Covid-19 patients in our database with commercial insurance.

CDC List of Underlying Health Conditions
Earlier this year, the CDC released a list of chronic diseases and underlying health conditions that would place patients at greater risk if they contract Covid-19. Patients with the following diseases have a much higher probability of experiencing a severe case of Covid-19 and may be hospitalized.

  • Asthma
  • Chronic Kidney Disease (treated with dialysis)
  • Chronic Lung Disease
  • Diabetes
  • Hemoglobin Disorders
  • Immunocompromised
  • Liver Disease
  • People aged 65 years and older
  • People in Nursing Homes / Long-term Care Facilities
  • Serious Heart Conditions
  • Severe Obesity

Co-morbidities Identified in Covid-19 Patient Histories
When we filtered our database of Covid-19 patient histories with commercial insurance, we found many instances of co-morbidities identified by the CDC. Patients with these health conditions are at higher risk for a more severe case of the coronavirus that will likely require hospitalization. In fact, our research statistically validated the inclusion of the following co-morbidities on the CDC list:

Co-morbidity Comparisons
Population Baseline
% COVID-19 Patients
Diabetes - Type 2
8%
19%
Obesity
4%
8%
Asthma
4%
7%
Congestive Heart Failure
2%
6%
Chronic Kidney Disease
2%
5%
Sources: Perception Health Commercial Medical Claims through June 15, 2020; U.S. Census Demographics.

Furthermore, the following co-morbidities show two to four times as many instances in Covid-19 patient histories when compared to the random sample. If people with these co-morbidities contract the disease, they are more likely to get a severe case of the disease that requires hospitalization.

Co-morbidities in COVID-19 Patients When Compared to Sample Population
Multiplier
Senile Dementia*

4 X

Anemia, Congestive Heart Failure

3 X

Acquired Hypothyroidism, Atrial Fibrillation, Bronchitis, Diabetes - Type 2, Hyperlipidemia, Hypertension, Obesity

2 X

Sources: Perception Health Commercial Medical Claims through June 15, 2020; U.S. Census Demographics.

*The inclusion of senile dementia in this chart is more a function of the age of patients in the database, which includes patients with Medicare Advantage. When we expect this co-morbidity to remain near the top of this list as we add more data.

The following table shows noteworthy comparisons of co-morbidities involving Covid-19 patients with commercial insurance and the random sample.

Chronic Disease
Population Baseline
% COVID-19 Patients
Hypertension
14%
29%
Diabetes - Type 2
8%
19%
Hyperlipidemia
8%
16%
Osteoarthritis
9%
15%
Anemia
4%
12%
Bronchitis
5%
9%
Obesity
4%
8%
Asthma
4%
7%
Acquired Hypothyroidism
3%
6%
Congestive Heart Failure
2%
6%
Sleep Apnea
5%
6%
Atrial Fibrillation
2%
5%
Chronic Kidney Disease
2%
5%
COPD
3%
5%
Depression
3%
5%
Senile Dementia*
1%
4%
Diabetes - Type 1
1%
2%
Sources: Perception Health Commercial Medical Claims through June 15, 2020; U.S. Census Demographics.

Medicare Patients - Races and Genders
Perception Health analysts recently reviewed  a data set containing medical claims records for 326,674 U.S. Medicare patients (through May 16, 2020) and compared that set to our data set commercial health insurance patients. In the Medicare data we see that blacks represent 22.5% of Covid-19 patients on Medicare, though blacks only make up 13.4% of the U.S. population. The rate of hospitalization for black Covid-19 patients with Medicare is an even higher percentage: 27.9%

We also see that more women than men with Medicare are diagnosed with Covid-19, though more men end up hospitalized.

Race
Medicare Cases
Percent
Medicare Hospitalizations
Percent
Asian
10,132
3.1%
4,022
3.7%
Black
73,365
22.5%
30,566
27.9%
Hispanic
41,902
12.8%
15,423
14.1%
Missing Data
251
0.1%
21
0.0%
Other/Unknown
8,766
2.7%
3,204
2.9%
White
192,258
58.9%
56,371
51.4%
Gender
Medicare Cases
Percent
Medicare Hospitalizations
Percent
Female
180,254
55.2%
54,603
49.8%
Male
146,169
44.7%
54,983
50.2%
Missing Data
251
0.1%
21
0.0%
Sources: CMS/Medicare Patients through May 16, 2020; U.S. Census Demographics.

Medicare Patients - Chronic Diseases
Our analysis of 326,674 U.S. Medicare patients diagnosed with Covid-19 confirms the recommendations from the CDC that individuals with compromised immune systems from the following chronic diseases stand a much greater chance of being hospitalized with a severe case. Patients with Hypertension, Hyperlipidemia, Chronic Kidney Diseases, Anemia, all Cancers, and diabetes should especially follow recommended safety measures to avoid contracting the disease.

Chronic Disease
Medicare Patients Hospitalized
Percent of Total Medicare Patients
Percent of Total Commercial Patients
Hypertension
56,255
17.2%
29%
Hyperlipidemia
43,114
13.2%
16%
Chronic Kidney Disease
35,990
11.0%
5%
Anemia
35,882
11.0%
12%
Diabetes
35,848
11.0%
19%
Ischemic Heart Disease
33,549
10.3%
6%
Rheumatoid Arthritis / Osteoarthritis
32,137
9.8%
15%
Alzheimer's Disease / Dementia
27,501
8.4%
*
Peripheral Vascular Disease
26,255
8.0%
*
Congestive Heart Failure
25,287
7.7%
*
Depression
24,965
7.6%
5%
Obesity
20,795
6.4%
8%
COPD
15,928
4.9%
5%
Atrial Fibrillation
10,367
3.2%
5%
Cancer
8,865
2.7%
19%
Schizophrenia
8,813
2.7%
*
Stroke
7,289
2.2%
*
Osteoporosis
6,371
2.0%
*
Asthma
6,082
1.9%
7%
Sources: Perception Health Commercial Medical Claims through June 15, 2020; CMS/Medicare Patients through May 16, 2020; U.S. Census Demographics. *Not enough patient data to report accurately.

Stay safe during these times
These statistics reiterate the fact that individuals with the above underlying health conditions must continue to shelter at home and take extra precautions when in large crowds. Wear a mask, wash your hands often, and continue to monitor the number of Covid-19 cases in your area.

We can help you grow market share
Perception Health has the freshest, most complete, actionable data available in the U.S. With our experience and expertise at analyzing Covid-19 medical claims records, imagine what we can do by analyzing claims records in your market. Contact us today for a complete demo of our services.