5 key notes on cost difference by severity of illness for spine surgery

Written by Laura Dyrda | October 31, 2017 | Print  |

A new study published in Clinical Spine Surgery examines the cost difference between spinal procedures based on the severity of the patient's illness.

 

Study authors examined the New York State Hospital Inpatient Cost Transparency Database, which included 69,831 hospital discharges for spinal surgery between 2009 and 2011. They analyzed the procedures by associated costs and found:

 

1. Hospital costs increased for patients with a higher severity of illness class and worse baseline health.

 

2. Costs were variable for each worsening severity of illness class, a trend seen across all three diagnosis-related groups studied.

 

3. Higher costs were associated with more severe illnesses across all seven of New York's regions, covering teaching and non-teaching hospitals.

 

4. Hospitals of all sizes reported higher costs for patients with higher illness severity.

 

5. The study authors confirmed sicker patients are more expensive and illustrated "the unpredictability in cost forecasting and budgeting" for the procedures.

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