Outcomes and hospital costs associated with the Norwood operation: beyond morbidity and mortality
Published online by Cambridge University Press: 03 November 2014
Although much is known about morbidity and mortality, there are limited data focussing on the financial aspect of the Norwood operation. Our objective is to characterise the hospitalisation and detail the hospital costs.
We retrospectively studied 86 newborns with hypoplastic left heart syndrome who underwent Norwood palliation between 2008 and 2012. Clinical and financial data were collected. Financial data have been reported for 2011–2012.
At surgery, median age and weight of the patients were 4 days (range 1–13) and 3 kg (range 2–4.8), respectively. The median time from admission to surgery was 4 days (range 1–10), with the postoperative ICU stay and total length of stay at the hospital being 10 days (range 4–135) and 16 days (range 5–136), respectively. Discharge mortality was 14/86 (16%) patients.
For patients operated on between 2011 and 2012 (n=40), median hospital costs, charges, and collections per patient were $117,021, $433,054, and $198,453, respectively, and mean hospital costs, charges, and collections per patient were $322,765, $1,109,500, and $511,271, respectively.
A breakdown of total hospital costs (direct and indirect) by department showed that the top four areas of resource utilisation (excluding physician fees) were as follows: the cardiac ICU (35%), laboratory (12%), pharmacy (12%), and operating room (7%). Interestingly, point-of-care laboratory evaluations accounted for almost half of the laboratory total (5%). Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, although only utilised in eight patients between 2011 and 2012, accounted for 7% of utilisation.General radiology only accounted for 2%, despite numerous radiographs.
Limited data are available that detail the hospitalisation and costs associated with the Norwood operation. We hope that this analysis will identify areas for quality and value improvement from both system and patient perspectives.
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