Patients treated at hospitals that spend more on inpatient care than outpatient care have a greater chance of seeing positive outcomes.
Positive patient outcomes are often linked to high inpatient rather than high outpatient facility spending, according to the Journal of Health Economics.
Using ambulance patterns, the journal examined patients treated at different facilities and found that those treated at hospitals with greater amounts of care over three months after a medical emergency had better health outcomes than those treated at hospitals that provided less care. In addition, patients treated at hospitals that spend more on inpatient care than outpatient care were more likely to survive one year after an emergency visit.
The journal stated that the U.S. healthcare system wastes up to 5% gross domestic product annually and identified postacute skilled nursing facility (SNF) care as a candidate for the source of some of this waste. Downstream SNF spending is often a predictor of patient mortality, according to the Journal of Health Economics.
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