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Rumaisa Aljied, Marie-Josée Aubin, Ralf Buhrmann, Saama Sabeti, Ellen E Freeman; Eye care utilization and its determinants in Canada: Cross-sectional findings from the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2018;59(9):5245.
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To provide the frequency and potential determinants of eye care utilization over the last 12 months among Canadians between the ages of 45 and 85 years old.
This analysis used baseline data from the 30,097 participants in the Comprehensive Cohort of the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging (CLSA). The participants were sampled using a combination of provincial health registries (14%) and random digit dialing (86%). Inclusion criteria included being between the ages of 45 and 85 years old, community-dwelling, and living near one of the 11 data collection sites across 7 Canadian provinces (Victoria, Vancouver, Surrey, Calgary, Winnipeg, Hamilton, Ottawa, Montreal, Sherbrooke, Halifax, and St. John’s). People were excluded if they were in an institution, living on a First Nations reserve, were a full-time member of the Canadian Armed Forces, did not speak English or French, or had cognitive impairment. Eye care utilization was defined as the self-report of a visit to an optometrist or ophthalmologist in the past 12 months. Logistic regression was used.
Fifty-seven percent of adults visited an eye care provider in the last year although there was heterogeneity between provinces. The highest eye care utilization was found in Ontario at 62%, while the lowest was in Newfoundland and Labrador at 50%. Of concern, 1 in 4 people with diabetes over age 60 had not seen an eye care provider in the last year. Current smokers were less likely to use eye care compared to never smokers (odds ratio (OR)=0.76, 95% CI 0.67, 0.87). Men compared to women (OR=0.67, 95% CI 0.62, 0.71), people with less than a Bachelor’s degree compared to more than a Bachelor’s degree (OR=0.87, 95% CI 0.79, 0.95), and people making less income (linear trend P<0.05) were also less likely to use eye care.
Disparities exist in eye care utilization in Canada. Efforts should be made to lessen these disparities to reduce avoidable vision loss.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2018 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Honolulu, Hawaii, April 29 - May 3, 2018.
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