Nursing

News spotlight: Economist links higher ER spending to lower mortality

Nurse Leader Insider, August 1, 2011

Want to receive articles like this one in your inbox? Subscribe to Nurse Leader Insider!

Hospitals that spend more money on emergency department care for cardiac patients have lower mortality rates for those patients, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology study has found.

"More intensive and expensive treatment leads to better outcomes," Joseph Doyle, the Alfred Henry and Jean Morrison Hayes Career Development Associate Professor of Applied Economics at the MIT Sloan School of Management, said in a statement.

In a paper published in the July issue of the American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, Doyle examined tens of thousands of cases in which out-of-state visitors were admitted to emergency rooms in Florida hospitals from 1996-2003. He discovered that an increase of about $4,000 per patient in hospital expenditures led to a 1.4 percentage-point decrease in the mortality rate. Overall, a 50% increase in what Doyle calls a hospital's "spending intensity" allows it to reduce mortality rates due to heart problems to about 26% below the mean, the study found.

The findings are sure to prompt more debate about the linkage between cost and quality care.

To read the full article for free, click here.

Source: HealthLeaders Media



Want to receive articles like this one in your inbox? Subscribe to Nurse Leader Insider!

Most Popular