Race-based differences in access to rehabilitation following traumatic brain injury

  • A retrospective analysis of 19,026 Medicare beneficiaries (5.2% non-Hispanic Black; 56.7% female) found that, following hospital discharge for traumatic brain injury, non-Hispanic Black beneficiaries were less likely to receive outpatient rehabilitation visits than White beneficiaries (P<0.001).
  • In the 6 months following discharge, Black beneficiaries received significantly less outpatient therapy (rate ratio 0.6; 95% CI 0.38–0.93) but modestly more home health rehabilitation (rate ratio 1.15; 95% CI 1.00–1.32) compared to White beneficiaries.
  • The authors concluded that the differences in rehabilitation use may contribute to the worsened functional recovery and residual disability observed in non-Hispanic Black individuals following traumatic brain injury.