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June 1990

Hospital Readmissions, Otolaryngology, and the Diagnosis Related Group Hospital Payment System

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, Long Island Jewish Medical Center, New Hyde Park, NY (Drs Muñoz, Johnson, and Wise, Mr Goldstein, and Ms Kahn) and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Newark (Dr Muñoz, and Messrs Lory and Brewster).

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1990;116(6):708-713. doi:10.1001/archotol.1990.01870060066012

• An analysis of otolaryngologic patients requiring readmission was conducted at our institution during a 4-year period to determine the number of readmissions per patient and the time between discharge and hospital readmission. Readmitted otolaryngologic patients were found to have had greater hospital resource utilization, financial risk under diagnosis-related group payment, and mortality, compared with those patients not readmitted to our facility. For patients readmitted to otolaryngologic services (21.2% of total otolaryngologic patients), 20.4% of the readmissions occurred within 30 days of hospital discharge. Of these, 39.3% required one hospital readmission, 16.3% required two readmissions, and 46.4% of the patients called for three or more hospital admissions. Clinical factors were identified that resulted in a greater incidence of otolaryngologic readmission. Otolaryngologic patients readmitted to other clinical services were also studied. This analysis leads to the conclusion that inequities exist within the diagnosis related group hospital payment system vis-à-vis otolaryngologic readmissions. The results of these data also demonstrate leverage points in which we will be able to focus outpatient services for otolaryngologic patients requiring readmission and potentially decrease inpatient hospital expenditures in the days ahead.

(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1990;116:708-713)

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