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To evaluate if income status affects the timing of presentation to orthopaedic care, surgical treatment, or continuity of care following a closed ankle fracture. Th is retrospective study identified 434 patients with closed ankle fractures treated with operative fixation from 2014 to 2016. Median income data were extracted using the patients' ZIP codes and data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Lower-income patients presented to the hospital and received surgical treatment significantly later than others. They were also more often uninsured and nonadherent with postoperative weightbearing precautions. Additionally, these patients less frequently sought care on the day of their injury, and they had both shorter inpatient stays and duration of overall follow-up in comparison with others. Socioeconomic status is a vital consideration for improving patient access to acute orthopaedic surgical care. Lower-income patients are more susceptible to multiple time-sensitive delays in their care, and these patients frequently encounter difficulties maintaining appropriate follow-up carex.


Travis S Bullock, Gautham Prabhakar, Case W Martin, John H Cabot, Farhan Ahmad, Luis M Salazar, Leah P Griffin, Gustavo J Almeida, Boris A Zelle. An Analysis of Traumatic Ankle Fracture Patients: Does Income Status Influence Access to Acute Orthopaedic Surgical Care? Journal of health care for the poor and underserved. 2021;32(2):1059-1068

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PMID: 34120993

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