“Greater use of chronic disease management programs and emphasis on outpatient treatment” may be part of the explanation for an overall decrease in inpatient hospital stays from 2003 to 2012, according to a recent report that analyzed community hospital use over a 10 year period.
According to the study, hospitalization rates dropped by an average of .3% per year from 2003 to 2008, and an average of 1.8% per year from 2008 to 2012.
The report, issued by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project, looked at rates, length, costs, and demographic variables related to hospitalization, and found that in addition to dropping rates, length of hospitalization also decreased by an average of .2% per year between 2003 and 2012.
After historically low rates of growth in the wake of the Great Recession, health care spending is projected to rise by 5.6% in 2014, and will likely see average growth rates of 6% 2015–2023, according to a new report from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published in Health Affairs.
A gradually improving economy and aging baby boomers will serve as primary drivers in the increased spending, which will be offset to a degree by “slower growth in Medicare payment rates mandated by health law, cuts made to hospitals and doctors in the congressional budget-cutting efforts, and the increasing use of higher deductibles in private insurance plans,” according to a report from Kaiser Health News.