Monday, July 15, 2013

Do hospitals take the weekend off? If you have a newborn it might be true. See here why...

Saw this HERE (read the whole article for more detail than I am providing).

This study looks at what happens to newborns admitted to a hospital under the non-emergency "failure to thrive" category.  The baby experienced a rapid weight loss prior to admission and the parents brought them to the hospital.  Not an emergency, but certainly understandable from the parents perspective.

The graph below shows the cost (left axis) and the length of stay (right axis)

It appears the hospital essentially warehouses the infants until the weekend is over and regular staff takes over.  This is costly and does not lead to improved health comes, but longer stays and higher costs.

Try telling that to parents! Seems like more rigorous pre-screening could eliminate this but I am just guessing the hospital accommodates and charges (1) the insurance company or (2) the government for the space.

Part of the problem in controlling medical care costs right there...

Source: The Incidental Economist
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