Changes in physician utilization over time among older adults

Timothy E. Stump, Robert J. Johnson, Fredric D. Wolinsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Although much is known from cross-sectional studies about the use of physician services among older adults, little is known about the consistency of or changes in that utilization over time. Hierarchical multivariable regression analysis of data on the 2,430 older adults who were enrolled in the LSOA and successfully reinterviewed in 1986, 1988, and 1990 is used to model changes in the number of physician visits between 1984 and 1990 based on the predisposing, enabling, and need (including functional status) characteristics measured in 1984, and subsequent changes in functional status. Overall, 19 percent of the variance in physician utilization is explained, with 8 percent coming from the introduction of the need characteristics, 4.7 percent from the subsequent introduction of the number of physician visits at baseline, and 4.9 percent from the subsequent introduction of changes in functional status. Declines in each of the functional status measures are significantly associated with increases in physician utilization, although improvements are fundamentally unrelated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S45-S58
JournalJournals of Gerontology - Series B Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences
Volume50 B
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1995
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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