Today, National Minority Quality Forum (NMQF) announced the launch of its Gout Index, in partnership with Alliance for Gout Awareness with support from Horizon Therapeutics, to help educate the public and healthcare providers on the disease, which affects more than 9 million Americans – while helping to eliminate the social stigmas that has allowed the condition to persist while preventing open discussion about gout, its related genetic factors, and disparities in diagnosis and treatment.
The Gout Index is comprised of aggregated chronic gout Medicare claims data from the 2016 Master Beneficiary Summary Files (including Chronic Condition and Cost and Utilization Segments), Medicare Outpatient, and Carrier Files. Details and data found in the Gout Index were also reviewed by a group of Advisory committee members.
“Gout afflicts patients with intense, painful symptoms,” said Gary A. Puckrein, Ph.D., President and CEO of National Minority Quality Forum. “It is a misunderstood disease that is frequently undiagnosed or misdiagnosed – and the social stigma regarding it can lead to patients’ reluctance to report the condition and seek treatment.”
NMQF collaborated with the Alliance for Gout Awareness in assembling an advisory committee comprised of healthcare experts and patient advocates. The advisory committee included participants from:
- American Kidney Fund
- Arthritis Foundation
- Gout Education Society
- National Kidney Foundation
- NOVA ScriptsCentral
- Alliance for Patient Access
“The Gout Index and community guidelines were created to further educate the public on health disparities that affect the gout community, as well as the factors that may lead to gout and gout flares,” said Josie Cooper, executive director of the Alliance for Gout Awareness. “Patients with gout are also at a heightened risk for several chronic conditions, while other chronic conditions, like kidney disease, can increase one’s risk of gout. Left untreated, gout attacks can become more frequent, prolonged and debilitating.”
While effective treatments exist, greater awareness is needed to ensure patients can receive timely treatment. As with other chronic conditions, the severity and consequences of gout are especially troubling in ethnic and racial minority communities, evidenced by tables and index maps included in this paper, based on U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services claims data.
For more information, visit the The Gout Index & Need for Gout Awareness microsite, and register now to join the May 18, 2022, webinar – “Perspectives on Gout Disparities: Recommendations on Prevention and Care through Analysis of Medicare Data” – which will take place live on Zoom at 12:30 p.m. ET.
Kelly Ann Collins
About National Minority Quality Forum
The National Minority Quality Forum (NMQF) is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit research and advocacy organization based in Washington, DC. The mission of NMQF is to reduce patient risk by assuring optimal care for all. NMQF’s vision is an American health services research, delivery and financing system whose operating principle is to reduce patient risk for amenable morbidity and mortality while improving quality of life. For more information, please visit www.nmqf.org.
About the Alliance for Gout Awareness
The Alliance for Gout Awareness (AGA) is a nonprofit patient advocacy coalition that works to raise public awareness around gout, reduce stigma, and empower patients to successfully manage their disease. Additionally, AGA members collaborate on educational materials, resources, and events to heighten the public awareness about the impact gout has on patients, families, and the community. For more information, please visit www.goutalliance.org.