AHRQ: Cardiovascular hospital costs on the rise

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Average total hospital costs rose across the board for cardiovascular and cerebrovascular conditions and procedures between 2001 and 2010, according to an analysis by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). In most categories, costs are projected to continue climbing through 2012.

AHRQ’s report, HCUP (Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project) Projections Cardiovascular and Cerebrovascular Conditions and Procedures 2011 to 2012, is based on data from 2001 to 2010 in HCUP’s State Inpatient Databases, which includes 330 million discharges from 46 states. Analysts used historical data as well as early 2011 data from 10 states to develop quarterly 2012 inpatient projections for 12 conditions and procedures.

The categories analyzed are: cardiovascular and cerebrovascular conditions; acute MI; coronary artery disease (CAD) and coronary atherosclerosis; congestive heart failure; stroke and acute cerebrovascular disease; atrial fibrillation (AF); cardiovascular and cerebrovascular procedures; CABG; percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty without stents; percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty with stents; aortic resection; and carotid endardectomy.

Analysts reported four outcomes: counts of inpatient discharges, average total hospital cost, average length of stay and in-hospital mortality rate. Among the cost findings:
  • The average hospital cost for discharges with cardiovascular and cerebrovascular conditions increased from approximately $9,500 in 2001 to $13,500 in 2010. This increasing trend is projected to continue in 2011 and 2012, with the average hospital cost projected to be approximately $15,000 at the end of 2012.
  • The average hospital cost for discharges with acute MI increased from approximately $16,000 in 2001 to $21,500 in 2010. The average hospital cost is projected to remain at this same level in 2012.
  • The average hospital cost for discharges with CAD and coronary atherosclerosis increased from $12,000 in 2001 to $19,000 in 2010. This increasing trend is projected to continue in 2012, with the average hospital cost projected to be approximately $21,000 at the end of 2012.
  • The average hospital cost for discharges with stroke and acute cerebrovascular disease increased from approximately $9,500 in 2001 to $15,000 in 2010. This increasing trend is projected to continue in 2012, with the average hospital cost projected to be approximately $16,500 at the end of the year.
  • The average hospital cost for discharges with AF increased from approximately $5,500 in 2001 to $8,500 in 2010. This increasing trend is projected to continue in 2012, with the average hospital cost projected to be approximately $9,500 at the end of the year.
  • The average hospital cost for discharges with CABG increased from approximately $29,000 in 2001 to $44,000 in 2010. This increasing trend is projected to continue in 2012, with the average hospital cost projected to be approximately $48,500 at the end of 2012.
  • The average hospital cost for discharges with angioplasty with stents increased from approximately $13,000 in 2001 to $20,500 in 2010. This increasing trend is projected to continue in 2012, with the average hospital cost projected to be approximately $23,000 at the end of 2012.

Average total hospital costs reflect actual expenses incurred in the production of hospital services but not physician billing. No adjustments were made to the costs to equate them to a constant year.

The HCUP report is available here.