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Author: yodaorange Big red star, 1000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Feste Award Winner! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 454727  
Subject: Complications are profitable for hospitals Date: 4/18/2013 12:47 AM
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A group of medical researchers published an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association aka JAMA on surgical outcomes. [1] One of the authors is Harvard Medical School professor/surgeon Atul Gawande. He wrote a significant analysis of medical costs a few years ago.

The significant finding is that hospitals make a lot more profit when a surgery patient has complications, compared to NO complications. The overall sample size was 34,256 so it was a fairly massive analysis.

Brief summary of the facts:

Patients with complications with private insurance contributed an additional $39,017 profit to the hospital.

Patients with complications covered by Medicare contributed an additional $1,749 profit to the hospital.


Quote from the abstract:


Conclusions and Relevance In this hospital system, the occurrence of postsurgical complications was associated with a higher per-encounter hospital contribution margin for patients covered by Medicare and private insurance but a lower one for patients covered by Medicaid and who self-paid. Depending on payer mix, many hospitals have the potential for adverse near-term financial consequences for decreasing postsurgical complications.



The data speaks for itself and Yoda cannot additional insight.

[1] JAMA Relationship Between Occurrence of Surgical Complications and Hospital Finances

http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=1679400

[2] Fortune magazine take on this story
http://management.fortune.cnn.com/2013/04/17/hospitals-healt...
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