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March 15, 1941

Current Comment

JAMA. 1941;116(11):1147. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820110111015

INCREASING HOSPITAL COSTS  In March 1940 the annual report of the Bridgeport, Conn., Hospital giving figures since the beginning of the century was analyzed to show, among other things, how the cost per patient day had increased from $1.32 in 1899 to $5.04 in 1939.1 The latest report of the same hospital adds another column of data covering forty years of hospital experience. The additional information gives the average hospital cost per patient by years. This cost, which was $44.88 in 1899, then declined irregularly to a low of $25.11 in 1913. Probably much of this decline was due to falling prices during this period. From this point the rise has been general until in 1940 it was $54.88, or more than twice as much as in 1913. Depression conditions probably account for the temporary decline from 1930 to 1935. The steady rise which followed can possibly be best