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Differential effect of socioeconomic status on rates of invasive coronary procedures across the public and private sectors in Queensland, Australia
  1. M Coory1,
  2. I A Scott2,
  3. P Baade1
  1. 1Health Information Centre, Queensland Health, Australia
  2. 2Department of Internal Medicine and Health Care Research, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Queensland, Australia
  1. Correspondence to:
 Michael Coory, Health Information Centre, Queensland Health, GPO Box 48, Brisbane, Qld 4001, Australia;

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Free access to health care for all Australians is enshrined in the publicly funded Medicare programme, which coexists with and subsidises the private sector. Information about equitable access under this system is scarce. In other countries with free health insurance, patients of low socioeconomic status (SES) have low rates of invasive coronary procedures (ICP): angiography, angioplasty, and bypass surgery.1,2 The purpose of this study was to examine whether SES has a differential effect on ICP rates across the public and private sectors in Queensland (population: 3.5 million), Australia.


We used computerised discharge abstracts to conduct a population-based cohort study of the 3531 patients admitted to Queensland hospitals for acute myocardial infarction (AMI) during 1998. AMI patients were identified using the ICD9-CM code 410.x1: first episode of care for a newly diagnosed myocardial infarction. Follow up was for one year and used probabilistic matching based on Medicare number, date of birth, sex, country of birth and address of usual residence. We applied two exclusion criteria: (1) age younger than 30 years or older than 89 years, …

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  • Funding: Queensland Health.

  • Conflicts of interest: none.