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Hospital stays, Alzheimer's disease and rabies ... no connection, just statistics

September 25, 2009 |  1:41 pm


For those interested in the statistics of healthcare, we have these reports floating about this week:

* The Agency for Healthcare Quality Research offers overview data for inpatient hospital stays:

Of note, between 1997 and 2007: "The number of discharges to home health care grew by 55 percent (up 1.3 million discharges). Discharges to nursing homes and long term care increased by 32 percent (1.2 million discharges). The number of patients who left the hospital against medical advice, although small, rose by 39 percent (up 103,700 discharges) — the second fastest increase of any discharge type."

* Alzheimer's Disease International provides its World Alzheimer Report:

It says: "An estimated 35.6 million people worldwide will be living with dementia in 2010. This number is estimated to nearly double every 20 years, to 65.7 million in 2030, and 115.4 million in 2050. Much of the increase is clearly attributable to increases in the numbers of people with dementia in low and middle income countries."

* And the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website gives a snapshot of rabies.

The number of cases among dogs and cats in 2007: 93 and 274, respectively. And in 2008: 75 and 294. The site notes: While dogs have historically been associated with rabies transmission to humans, cats are the animal most likely to expose a human to rabies. 

There's also a breakdown of cases by state. Top of the chart: Texas, with 1,022.

-- Tami Dennis

Photo: Cat owners are less likely to take their pet to the vet, the CDC says. Tsk.

Credit: Francine Orr/ Los Angeles Times