Background & Aims: There is significant variability in county-level rates of liver disease–related mortality. Although this variability is explained partly by demographics, risk factors for liver disease, and access to specialty liver care, little is known about temporal changes in mortality, and its association with economic prosperity. Therefore, we sought to explore the association between changes in county-level economic prosperity and liver disease–related mortality. Methods: We performed a retrospective cohort study using county-level mortality data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, economic prosperity measures from the Distressed Communities Index, and county-level markers of demographics, risk factors for liver disease, and access to health care. Primary analyses focused on adults aged 20 to 64 years of age. We used generalized linear mixed models (outcome = annual percentage change in age-adjusted liver disease–related mortality), with the primary exposure being an interaction between year and change in economic prosperity. Results: There was an inverse relationship between county-level changes in economic prosperity and changes in county-level age-adjusted liver disease–related mortality rates (eg, counties with the smallest increase in economic prosperity had the biggest annual increase in liver disease–related mortality). In generalized linear mixed models accounting for county-level covariates, there was a significant association between economic prosperity and liver disease–related mortality, that is, for every 10-point higher mean rank for change in economic prosperity, there was an additional 0.65% decrease (95% CI, 0.19%–1.10%; P = .006) in mortality per year. Conclusions: County-level changes in economic prosperity, independent of other county-level clinical, demographic, and access-to-care variables, may play a role in population-level trends in liver disease–related deaths among the working age population.
- Alcohol Use
ASJC Scopus subject areas