Early discharge and home intervention reduces unit costs after total hip replacement: results of a cost analysis in a randomized study
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Jonsson, Brynjolfur Y
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CitationInt J Health Care Finance Econ 2008, 8(3):181-92
AbstractTotal hip replacement (THR) is a common and costly procedure. The number of THR is expected to increase over the coming years. Two pathways of postoperative treatment were compared in a randomized study. Fifty patients from two hospitals were randomized into a study group (SG) of 27 patients receiving preoperative and postoperative education programs, as well as home visits from an outpatient team. A control group (CG) of 23 patients received "conventional" rehabilitation augmented by a stay at a rehabilitation center if needed. All costs for the two groups both in hospitals and after discharge were collected and analyzed. On average total costs for the SG were $8,550 and $11,952 for the CG, a 28% cost reduction. Total inpatient costs were $5,225 for the SG and $6,515 for the CG. In a regression analysis the group difference is statistically significant. Adjusting for changes in the Oxford Hip Score gives effective costs (C/E). The ratio of the SGs C/E to the CGs is 0.60. That is a cost-effectiveness gain of 40%. A shorter hospital stay augmented with better preoperative education and home treatment appears to be more effective and costs less than the traditional in hospital pathway of treatment.
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