Financial incentives are leading small facilities to perform more surgeries
Excerpt: The Journal’s analysis “suggests there is not just a financial cost but a huge clinical cost” to the rising number of surgeries, said Ashish Jha, a Harvard professor who has studied critical-access hospitals. “Patients are getting bad outcomes, probably because they are getting procedures at hospitals without the experience to do it well,” he said.
Dr. Jha and associates at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health reviewed the Journal’s findings using a statistical method that corrects for the effects of patients’ varying health conditions, ages and other factors. That analysis found the 30-day mortality rate for inpatient joint replacements was about 9 per 1,000 at critical-access hospitals in 2013, compared with around 5 in 1,000 at general hospitals.