Predicting future geographic hotspots of potentially preventable hospitalisations using all subset model selection and repeated K-fold cross-validation

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Abstract

Long-term future prediction of geographic areas with high rates of potentially preventable hospitalisations (PPHs) among residents, or “hotspots”, is critical to ensure the effective location of place-based health service interventions. This is because such interventions are typically expensive and take time to develop, implement, and take effect, and hotspots often regress to the mean. Using spatially aggregated, longitudinal administrative health data, we introduce a method to make such predictions. The proposed method combines all subset model selection with a novel formulation of repeated k-fold cross-validation in developing optimal models. We illustrate its application predicting three-year future hotspots for four PPHs in an Australian context: type II diabetes mellitus, heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and “high risk foot”. In these examples, optimal models are selected through maximising positive predictive value while maintaining sensitivity above a user-specified minimum threshold. We compare the model’s performance to that of two alternative methods commonly used in practice, i.e., prediction of future hotspots based on either: (i) current hotspots, or (ii) past persistent hotspots. In doing so, we demonstrate favourable performance of our method, including with respect to its ability to flexibly optimise various different metrics. Accordingly, we suggest that our method might effectively be used to assist health planners predict excess future demand of health services and prioritise placement of interventions. Furthermore, it could be used to predict future hotspots of non-health events, e.g., in criminology.

Original languageEnglish
Article number10253
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume18
Issue number19
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2021

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