Background: South Korea faces difficulties in the management of mental disorders, and those difficulties are expected to gradually worsen. Therefore, we analyzed the relationship between social welfare centers and hospital admission after outpatient treatment for mood disorders. Methods: We used data from the National Health Insurance Service National Sample Cohort 2002-2013, which included all medical claims filed for the 50,160 patients who were newly diagnosed with a mood disorder among the 1,025,340 individuals in a nationally representative sample. We performed a logistic regression analysis using generalized estimating equation (GEE) models to examine the relationship between social welfare centers and hospital admission after outpatient treatment for mood disorders (ICD-10: F3). Results: There was a 3.9% admission rate among a total of 99,533 person-years. Outpatients who lived in regions with more social welfare centers were less likely to be admitted to a hospital (per increase of five social welfare centers per 100,000 people; OR: 0.958; 95% CI: 0.919-0.999). Social welfare centers had an especially strong protective effect on patients with relatively mild mood disorders and those who were vulnerable to medical expenditures. Conclusions: Considering the protective role of social welfare centers in managing patients with mood disorders, health-policy makers need to consider strategies for activating mental healthcare.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)