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Assessment of the Social Security Administration Death Master File for Comparative Analysis Studies of Peripheral Vascular Devices

  • Eric A. Secemsky
    Correspondence
    Correspondence: Eric A. Secemsky, MD, MSc, Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, 375 Longwood Ave, 4th Floor, Boston, MA 02215, USA.
    Affiliations
    Richard A. and Susan F. Smith Center for Outcomes Research in Cardiology, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA

    Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA

    Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA
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  • Eric Barrette
    Affiliations
    Medtronic, Inc, Minneapolis, MN, USA
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  • Lindsay Bockstedt
    Affiliations
    Medtronic, Inc, Minneapolis, MN, USA
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  • Robert W. Yeh
    Affiliations
    Richard A. and Susan F. Smith Center for Outcomes Research in Cardiology, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA

    Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA

    Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA
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      Abstract

      Objectives

      The objective of this study was to assess the reliability the Social Security Administration Death Master File (SSADMF) for evaluating mortality in comparative peripheral vascular device studies.

      Methods

      We leveraged 2 versions of an administrative claims data set that were identical except for the source of mortality data. The SSADMF was the primary source of mortality records in one version. The SSADMF was combined with mortality from Medicare beneficiary records in the other. Our study was set in the context of a comparative effectiveness analysis of recent Food and Drug Administration interest involving peripheral paclitaxel-coated devices. Mortality of patients with Medicare Advantage insurance coverage from 2015 to 2018 who underwent femoropopliteal artery revascularization with a drug-coated device (DCD) or non-DCD was assessed through 2019. Covariate differences between treatment groups were adjusted by inverse propensity treatment weighting. The hazard ratio of DCD to non-DCD mortality was estimated using Cox regression.

      Results

      The cumulative incidences of mortality differed substantially between versions of the data. Nevertheless, we could not reject the null hypothesis that the hazard ratios of the SSADMF (1.05; 95% confidence interval 0.95-1.17) and the Master Beneficiary Summary File/SSADMF (1.03; 95% confidence interval 0.96-1.11) were the same (P = .63).

      Conclusions

      The SSADMF is a common source of mortality records in the United States that can be linked to real-world data sources but is known to underreport mortality rates. We find that the SSADMF provides a reliable source of all-cause mortality for a comparative study assessing the safety of peripheral vascular devices.

      Keywords

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