Substance Use in Uninsured Cancer Survivors: A Multicenter Cross-Sectional Study of Free Clinics.
Introduction Substance use disorders occur in about 5% of the cancer population and can decrease treatment adherence, impede pain management, and undermine a cancer survivor's network of social support. Although current literature demonstrates substance use is associated with socioeconomic disparity, there is limited research on the prevalence of alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drug use among uninsured cancer survivors in the United States. Our multicenter cross-sectional study describes the prevalence of substance use in uninsured cancer survivors in the Tampa Bay Area. Methods A comprehensive retrospective chart review of electronic medical records and paper charts was conducted at nine free clinics in the Tampa Bay Area of Florida between January 1, 2016, and December 31, 2017. Substance use prevalence was compared between uninsured cancer survivors and uninsured patients without reported cancer history after adjusting for available demographic risk factors. Results There were 222 patients with a history of cancer and 6,768 patients without a history of cancer included for analysis. Cancer survivors had a median age of 55 years (interquartile range 48-61 years), were mostly female (n = 146, 66.1%), and of Hispanic ethnicity (n = 94, 52.5%). Cancer survivors were more likely to be current smokers (n = 42, 25.1%) compared to patients without a cancer history (n = 759, 16.1%). Patients with a history of cancer were more likely to be current drinkers (n = 34, 26%) compared to non-cancer patients (n = 942, 22.9%). There was no significant difference in illicit drug use history between the two groups. Conclusions Our study demonstrates that uninsured cancer survivors are more likely to be smokers and alcohol consumers than uninsured patients without a history of cancer. There was no significant difference in illicit drug use in cancer survivors and patients without a history of cancer. Future educational interventions should target substance use among uninsured cancer survivors.
Published In/Presented At
MacDonald, M., Shah, S., Swanson, J., Song, E., Ahsan, T., Pabbathi, S., Mhaskar, R., & Mirza, A. S. (2020). Substance Use in Uninsured Cancer Survivors: A Multicenter Cross-Sectional Study of Free Clinics. Cureus, 12(8), e10083. https://doi.org/10.7759/cureus.10083
Medical Education | Medicine and Health Sciences
USF-LVHN SELECT Program, USF-LVHN SELECT Program Students