Hospitalizations due to primary care sensitive conditions in a population of older adults in the state of Rio Grande do Norte from 2008 to 2016

Abstract Objective : To identify hospitalizations to primary care sensitive conditions among older adults in the state of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil. Method : An ecological study using information from the Hospitalization Information System of the Unified Health System was carried out. Mortality rate, permanence and costs resulting from hospitalization in the period from 2008 to 2016 were analyzed according to residence, age and sex. Results : The greatest proportions of hospitalizations were due to bacterial pneumonias and gastroenteritis. Illnesses that could be prevented by immunization had the longest average stay (on average 17 days); the highest admission rates were among men and for the over 80 age group, both in the period 2008-2010. In the period 2014-2016, hospitalizations for primary care sensitive conditions (or HPCSC) corresponded to 30.90% of all hospitalizations and 16.36% of the hospitalization expenses of the state. The average cost per HPCSC was R$970.54 during the same three-year period. Conclusion : In Rio Grande do Norte, hospitalizations due to primary care sensitive conditions among older adults is decreasing, although it is still an important cause of hospitalization and public health spending.