The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA

The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA

3138.0: Monday, November 17, 2003 - 11:00 AM

Abstract #61155

Annual hospital charges for prematurity in the United States

Rebecca Russell, MSPH1, Joann Petrini, PhD, MPH1, Michael Davidoff, MPH1, Karla Damus, RN, PhD1, Lisa Potetz2, Karalee Poschman3, and Nancy Green, MD4. (1) Perinatal Data Center, March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation, 1275 Mamaroneck Ave, White Plains, NY 10605, 914-997.4683,, (2) March of Dimes Office of Government Affairs, 1146 19th Street, NW 6th Floor, Washington, DC 20036, (3) March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation, Yale University, 1275 Mamaroneck Avenue, White Plains, NY 10605, (4) March of Dimes, 1275 Mamaroneck Avenue, White Plains, NY 10605

Between 1981 and 2001, the U.S. preterm birth rate (<37 completed weeks of gestation) increased 27% (9.4% to 11.9%)--the highest ever reported. Premature infants face a higher risk of health problems and death than other newborns and often require care in neonatal intensive care units. The purpose of this study was to determine the magnitude of hospital charges related to prematurity. Analyses were conducted using the Nationwide Inpatient Sample (NIS) for 2000, which includes 7.5 million inpatient stays from a sample of 994 U.S. acute care hospitals (defined by AHRQ as “community hospitals”). Hospital charges for “prematurity” were based on infant (less than one year) stays with a diagnosis of prematurity/low birthweight (LBW). Cases were identified using the Clinical Classification Software code for “Short gestation, LBW, fetal growth retardation.” In 2000, 388,000 infant stays had any diagnosis of prematurity/LBW. Charges for these stays totaled $11.6 billion and averaged $31,000. The average length of stay was 12.4 days. Stays missing charges (n= 9,750) were assigned the average charge ($31,000). Combined with stays with known charges, the total national bill for hospital stays with any diagnosis of prematurity/LBW was estimated at $11.9 billion. Hospital stays for infants with any diagnosis of prematurity comprised about half of total charges for all infants in 2000 ($25 billion). These results, including findings for infants with a principal diagnosis of prematurity/LBW, comparisons of alternate coding methods (e.g., ICD-9, diagnosis-related groups) and approaches for using NIS to estimate hospital charges for perinatal conditions will be presented.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Infant Health, Economic Analysis

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Research on High Risk Birth Outcomes and SIDS/Infant Mortality

The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA