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Breast cancer screening among females with and without schizophrenia


Importance — Breast cancer screening with mammography is recommended in Ontario, Canada, for females 50 years or older. Females with schizophrenia are at higher risk of breast cancer, but in Ontario it is currently unknown whether breast cancer screening completion differs between those with vs without schizophrenia and whether primary care payment models are a factor.

Objective — To compare breast cancer screening completion within 2 years after the 50th birthday among females with and without schizophrenia, and to identify the association between breast cancer screening completion and different primary care payment models.

Design, Setting, and Participants — This case-control study analyzed Ontario-wide administrative data on females with and without schizophrenia who turned 50 years of age between January 1, 2010, and December 31, 2019. Those with schizophrenia (cases) were matched 1:10 to those without schizophrenia (controls) on local health integration network, income quintile, rural residence, birth dates, and weighted Aggregated Diagnosis Group score. Data analysis was performed from November 2021 to February 2023.

Exposures — Exposures were schizophrenia and primary care payment models.

Main Outcomes and Measures — Outcomes included breast cancer screening completion among cases and controls within 2 years after their 50th birthday and the association with receipt of care from primary care physicians enrolled in different primary care payment models, which were analyzed using logistic regression and reported as odds ratios (ORs) and 95% CIs.

Results — The study included 11 631 females with schizophrenia who turned 50 years of age during the study period and a matched cohort of 115 959 females without schizophrenia, for a total of 127 590 patients. Overall, 69.3% of cases and 77.1% of controls had a mammogram within 2 years after their 50th birthday. Cases had lower odds of breast cancer screening completion within 2 years after their 50th birthday (OR, 0.67; 95% CI, 0.64-0.70). Cases who received care from a primary care physician in a fee-for-service (OR, 0.57; 95% CI, 0.53-0.60) or enhanced fee-for-service (OR, 0.79; 95% CI, 0.75-0.82) payment model had lower odds of having a mammogram than cases whose physicians were paid under a Family Health Team model.

Conclusions and Relevance — This case-control study found that, in Ontario, Canada, breast cancer screening completion was lower among females with schizophrenia, and differences from those without schizophrenia may partially be explained by differences in primary care payment models. Widening the availability of team-based primary care for females with schizophrenia may play a role in increased breast cancer screening rates.



O’Neill B, Yusuf A, Lofters A, Huang A, Ekeleme N, Kiran T, Greiver M, Sullivan F, Kurdyak P. JAMA Netw Open. 2023; 6(11):e2345530. Epub 2023 Nov 29.

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