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Refining hypertension surveillance to account for potentially misclassified cases

Peng M, Chen G, Lix LM, McAlister FA, Tu K, Campbell NR, Hemmelgarn BR, Svenson LW, Quan H, Hypertension Outcomes Surveillance Team. PLoS One. 2015; 10(3): e0119186.


Administrative health data have been used in hypertension surveillance using the 1H2P method: the International Classification of Disease (ICD) hypertension diagnosis codes were recorded in at least 1 hospitalization or 2 physician claims within 2 year-period. Accumulation of false positive cases over time using the 1H2P method could result in the overestimation of hypertension prevalence. In this study, we developed and validated a new reclassification method to define hypertension cases using regularized logistic regression with the age, sex, hypertension and comorbidities in physician claims, and diagnosis of hypertension in hospital discharge data as independent variables. A Bayesian method was then used to adjust the prevalence estimated from the reclassification method. We evaluated the hypertension prevalence in data from Alberta, Canada using the currently accepted 1H2P method and these newly developed methods. The reclassification method with Bayesian adjustment produced similar prevalence estimates as the 1H2P method. This supports the continued use of the 1H2P method as a simple and practical way to conduct hypertension surveillance using administrative health data.

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Keywords: Data evaluation Data validation Hypertension

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