Demographic and risk-factor differences between users and non-users of unscheduled healthcare among pediatric outpatients with persistent asthma

Pavani Rangachari, Dixie D. Griffn, Santu Ghosh, Kathleen R. May

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This study assesses differences between users and non-users of unscheduled healthcare for persistent childhood asthma, with regard to select demographic and risk factors. The objectives are to provide important healthcare utilization information and a foundation for future research on self-management effectiveness (SME), informed by a recently developed “holistic framework” for measuring SME in childhood asthma. An 18-month retrospective chart review was conducted on 59 pediatric outpatients with persistent asthma—mild, moderate, or severe, to obtain data on various demographic and risk factors, and healthcare use for each child. The study examined five types of “unscheduled” healthcare use. Users had non-zero encounters (at least one) in any of the five types; non-users had zero encounters (not even one) in all five types. Differences between users and non-users were assessed using contingency table and logistic regression analysis. There were 25 users and 34 non-users of unscheduled healthcare. Each severity category contained users and non-users. The only statistically significant finding was that the mild persistent category had fewer users than severe persistent (p < 0.05). There were no significant differences between users and non-users for any other demographic or risk factor examined. After adjusting for asthma severity, there were no other significant differences between users and non-users of unscheduled healthcare. This is a crucial finding which suggests that something else is driving unscheduled healthcare use in these children, given there were users and non-users in each asthma severity category. These results provide impetus for future research on the role of other aspects of the “holistic framework” in explaining differences in uses of unscheduled healthcare in persistent childhood asthma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2704
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 2 2020



  • Asthma management
  • Evidence-based practice guidelines
  • Healthcare utilization
  • Holistic framework
  • Pediatric asthma
  • Persistent asthma
  • References
  • Self-management effectiveness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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