Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Does Increased Hospital Spending Reduce Mortality?

Written By: Jason Shafrin - Jun• 18•13

According to Romley, Jena and Goldman (2011), the answer is yes.

For each of 6 diagnoses at admission—acute myocardial infarction, congestive heart failure, acute stroke, gastrointestinal hemorrhage, hip fracture, and pneumonia—patient admission to higher-spending hospitals was associated with lower risk-adjusted inpatient mortality. During 1999 to 2003, for example, patients admitted with acute myocardial infarction to California hospitals in the highest quintile of hospital spending had lower inpatient mortality than did those admitted to hospitals in the lowest quintile (odds ratio, 0.862 [95% CI, 0.742 to 0.983]). Predicted inpatient deaths would increase by 1831 if all patients admitted with acute myocardial infarction were cared for in hospitals in the lowest quintile of spending rather than the highest. The association between hospital spending and inpatient mortality did not vary by region or hospital size.


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