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A comparison of hospital administrative costs In eight nations: US costs exceed all others by far

Himmelstein, David U., Jun, Miraya, Busse, Reinhard, Chevreul, Karine, Geissler, Alexander, Jeurissen, Patrick, Thomson, Sarah, Vinet, Marie-Amelie and Woolhandler, Sttefie (2014) A comparison of hospital administrative costs In eight nations: US costs exceed all others by far. Health Affairs, 33 (9). pp. 1586-1594. ISSN 0278-2715

Full text not available from this repository.
Identification Number: 10.1377/hlthaff.2013.1327

Abstract

A few studies have noted the outsize administrative costs of US hospitals, but no research has compared these costs across multiple nations with various types of health care systems. We assembled a team of international health policy experts to conduct just such a challenging analysis of hospital administrative costs across eight nations: Canada, England, Scotland, Wales, France, Germany, the Netherlands, and the United States. We found that administrative costs accounted for 25.3 percent of total US hospital expenditures—a percentage that is increasing. Next highest were the Netherlands (19.8 percent) and England (15.5 percent), both of which are transitioning to market-oriented payment systems. Scotland and Canada, whose single-payer systems pay hospitals global operating budgets, with separate grants for capital, had the lowest administrative costs. Costs were intermediate in France and Germany (which bill per patient but pay separately for capital projects) and in Wales. Reducing US per capita spending for hospital administration to Scottish or Canadian levels would have saved more than $150 billion in 2011. This study suggests that the reduction of US administrative costs would best be accomplished through the use of a simpler and less market-oriented payment scheme.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: http://www.healthaffairs.org/
Additional Information: © 2014 by Project HOPE
Divisions: Social Policy
LSE Health
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
Sets: Departments > Social Policy
Research centres and groups > LSE Health
Date Deposited: 15 Sep 2014 10:47
Last Modified: 20 Nov 2019 11:11
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/59471

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