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Hospital Performance: Costs of acute admitted patients in public hospitals in 2011–12

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Heart failure
With complications or comorbidities

Heart failure is a chronic condition that occurs when the heart is unable to pump blood strongly enough around the body. It includes cardiac shock, which occurs when blood flow to vital organs is inadequate for normal function. The data presented here relate to costs incurred by a hospital for patients who were admitted for heart failure with complications or comorbidities.

In 2011–12, there were 7,264 admissions for heart failure with complications or comorbidities in major metropolitan and major regional public hospitals.

CACost per Admission

Across all major metropolitan hospitals, the average cost per admission for heart failure with complications was $11,800. The average cost per admission ranged from $7,500 at one hospital to $24,800 at another hospital.

Across all major regional hospitals, the average cost per admission for heart failure with complications was $12,900. The average cost per admission ranged from $8,300 at one hospital to $16,900 at another hospital.

LOSLength of Stay

A previous Authority report showed the average length of stay for heart failure with complications in 2011–12 was 9.9 days.7 At major metropolitan hospitals, the average length of stay for heart failure with complications ranged from 7.2 to 13.9 days, and at major regional hospitals the average length of stay ranged from 7.2 to 15.0 days.7

By comparing the cost of a patient’s admission for heart failure with complications to their length of stay it is possible to assess the incremental cost that each additional day(s) spent in hospital contributes to the patient’s costs of care (Figure 9).

It is important to note that these costs do not reflect the total costs of treating this condition. The report considers only the subset of total costs that are fully comparable between hospitals. For example, it excludes property, plant and equipment costs.

Figure 9: Table showing the average cost for heart failure with complications or comorbidities in major public hospitals, by length of stay, 2011–12

Length of stay Average cost
Same day $1,800
1 day $2,800
2 days $3,800
3 days $5,100
4 days $7,200
5 days $7,100
6 days $8,400
7 days $9,500
8 days $10,900
9 days $11,700
10 days $12,600
11 days $14,100
12 days $15,000
13 days $15,800
14 days $17,700
15 days $17,800
16 days $20,700
17 days $19,400

Sources: National Health Performance Authority analysis of results calculated using the National Hospital Cost Data Collection 2011–12 and Admitted Patient Care National Minimum Dataset 2011–12.

7. National Health Performance Authority. Hospital Performance: Length of stay in public hospitals in 2011–12 [Internet]. Sydney: National Health Performance Authority; 2013 Nov 7 [cited 2013 Nov 7]. Available from: Hospital Performance: Length of stay in public hospitals in 2011–12

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