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A Nationwide Study of Prevalence Rates and Characteristics of 199 Chronic Conditions in Denmark


  • Michael Falk Hvidberg

    (Aalborg University)

  • Soeren Paaske Johnsen

    (Aarhus University Hospital)

  • Michael Davidsen

    (University of Southern Denmark)

  • Lars Ehlers

    (Aalborg University)


Background Real-world data of disease prevalence represents an important but underutilised source of evidence for health economic modelling. Aims The aim of this study was to estimate nationwide prevalence rates and summarise the characteristics of 199 chronic conditions using Danish population-based health registers, to provide an off-the-shelf tool for decision makers and researchers. Methods The study population comprised all Danish residents aged 16 years or above on 1 January 2013 (n = 4,555,439). The study was based on the linkage of national registers covering hospital contacts, contacts with primary care (including general practitioners) and filled-in out-of-hospital prescriptions. Results A total of 65.6% had one or more chronic condition. The ten conditions with the highest degree of prevalence were hypertension (23.3%), respiratory allergy (18.5%), disorders of lipoprotein metabolism (14.3%), depression (10.0%), bronchitis (9.2%), asthma (7.9%), type 2 diabetes (5.3%), chronic obstructive lung disease (4.7%), osteoarthritis of the knee (3.9%) and finally osteoporosis (3.5%) and ulcers (3.5%) in joint tenth place. Characteristics by gender, age and national geographical differences were also presented. Conclusions A nationwide catalogue of the prevalence rates and characteristics of patients with chronic conditions based on a nationwide population is provided. The prevalence rates of the 199 conditions provide important information on the burden of disease for use in healthcare planning, as well as for economic, aetiological and other research.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Falk Hvidberg & Soeren Paaske Johnsen & Michael Davidsen & Lars Ehlers, 2020. "A Nationwide Study of Prevalence Rates and Characteristics of 199 Chronic Conditions in Denmark," PharmacoEconomics - Open, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 361-380, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:pharmo:v:4:y:2020:i:2:d:10.1007_s41669-019-0167-7
    DOI: 10.1007/s41669-019-0167-7

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    1. Chris Sampson’s journal round-up for 1st June 2020
      by Chris Sampson in The Academic Health Economists' Blog on 2020-06-01 11:00:00

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