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All-Cause Readmission Rates by Payer and Age

Reducing hospital readmissions is a goal for improving health care and lowering costs. A new Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality analysis provides all-cause readmissions data by age and insurance status to identify population groups that have higher readmission rates.

For example, overall readmission rates for all causes among privately insured non-maternal adults age 45-64 in 2008 were:

  • 7 day: 4.2%
  • 14 day: 7.1%
  • 30 day: 11.9%

By contrast, non-maternal adults age 45-64 that were covered by Medicaid had overall readmission rates nearly double those of their privately insured counterparts, making them a likely target group for improvement efforts:

  • 7 day: 8.1%
  • 14 day: 14.2%
  • 30 day: 24.4%

However, the privately insured group shouldn’t be overlooked as an improvement focus. The overall readmission volume  from the 15 states analyzed was significantly higher among the privately-insured non-maternal adults age 45-64 — 1,236,800 — versus the 326,500 Medicaid cohort.

Source: Wier LM and others. All-cause readmissions by payer and age, 2008. HCUP (Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project) Statistical Brief #115, June 2011. http://www.hcup-us.ahrq.gov/reports/statbriefs/sb115.pdf

Posted by AHA Resource Center, (312) 422-2003, rc@aha.org

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