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New HCUP Statistical Brief Highlights Most Expensive Conditions by Payer for 2017

The Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP) has posted a new statistical brief on the following: National Inpatient Hospital Costs: The Most Expensive Conditions by Payer, 2017. The Statistical Brief presents data from the HCUP on costs of hospital inpatient stays in the United States using the 2017 National Inpatient Sample (NIS). It describes the distribution of costs by primary expected payer and illustrates the conditions accounting for the largest percentage of each payer’s hospital costs. The expected payers examined are Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance, and self-pay/no charge. Hospital costs in this Statistical Brief represent the hospital’s costs to produce the services—not the amount paid for services by payers—and they do not include separately billed physician fees associated with the hospitalization.

Highlights include:

  • In 2017, aggregate hospital costs for 35.8 million hospital stays totaled $434.2 billion.
  • The five most expensive inpatient conditions were septicemia, osteoarthritis, liveborn (newborn) infants, acute myocardial infarction, and heart failure. The 20 most expensive conditions accounted for slightly less than half of aggregate hospital costs.
  • The share of aggregate inpatient hospital costs by primary expected payer was 66 percent for Medicare and Medicaid combined, 27 percent for private insurance, and 3 percent for self-pay/no charge stays.
  • Septicemia ranked among the three most costly conditions in the hospital for all four expected payer groups

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