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Patients Choice in Elective Care Increased Emergency Readmissions Study Finds

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Introducing competition into the NHS in England to try to drive up quality had the perverse effect of lowering it for some elective procedures, a team of economists from Surrey and York universities has found. In a paper presented at the Royal Economic Society’s conference in Warwick, the authors said that emergency readmissions after hip and knee replacements rose after patient choice was introduced between 2006 and 2008. Greater numbers of emergency readmissions imply a lower quality of care.

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