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Nayyereh Aminisani 1 Article
Socio-demographic and lifestyle factors associated with multimorbidity in New Zealand
Nayyereh Aminisani, Christine Stephens, Joanne Allen, Fiona Alpass, Seyed Morteza Shamshirgaran
Epidemiol Health. 2020;42:e2020001.   Published online December 27, 2019
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AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary Material
The incidence of multimorbidity (MM) and its correlates among older adults remain poorly understood. This study aimed to examine the socio-demographic and lifestyle factors associated with MM in New Zealand.
People aged 55-70 years were invited to participate in a population-based cohort study, the Health Work and Retirement Study, in 2006. Those who accepted the invitation and completed the baseline questionnaire were followed up on a biennial basis. Data on socio-demographic factors, health and lifestyle behaviours, and diagnoses of chronic diseases were obtained from baseline and 6 waves of follow-up. Generalised estimating equations (GEE) adjusted for both time-constant and time-varying factors were used to model factors associated with the onset of MM.
A total of 1,673 participants (with 0 or 1 chronic condition) contributed to an overall 8,616 person-years of observation. There were 590 new cases of MM over 10 years of follow-up, corresponding to an overall incidence of 68.5 per 1,000 person-years. The results of the age- and sex-adjusted GEE analysis showed that age, ethnicity, living alone, obesity, hypertension, and having 1 chronic condition at baseline were significant predictors of MM onset. Higher education, income, physical activity, and regular alcohol consumption were protective factors. In a fully adjusted model, marital status (odds ratio [OR], 1.18; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.01 to 1.37; p=0.039), hypertension (OR, 1.23; 95% CI, 1.02 to 1.48; p=0.032) and having 1 chronic condition at baseline (OR, 2.92; 95% CI, 2.33 to 3.67; p<0.001) remained significant.
The higher incidence of MM among Māori people, socioeconomically disadvantaged groups, those with low physical activity, and obese individuals highlights the importance of targeted prevention strategies.


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