Healthcare Costs

On the heels of healthcare reform legislation in the United States, we came across some very interesting statistics regarding the 10 most frequent outpatient diagnosis and their average cost.  The American Hospital Directory conducted an analysis of the Medicare Outpatient Prospective Payment System most current report. These are the results of their findings, highlighting the top 10 most frequent outpatient diagnosis and their associated costs. The analysis was done according to each condition’s ICD-9 billing codes.

Diagnosis Claims Average Cost
Hypertension, unspecified 1,000,618 $708
Chest pain, unspecified 795,020 $3,205
Lower back pain 671,255 $1,353
Atrial fibrillation 
661,278 $1,250
Abdominal pain, unspecified site 661,273 $2,315
Pain in limb 648,990 $900
Diabetes mellitus, without
mention of complication
551,205 $543
Malignant neoplasm of prostate 527,365 $5,096
Anemia, unspecified 510,670 $2,110

Source: American Hospital Directory

A number of key opinion leaders and hypertension experts as well as several scientific societies in the US and Europe have already weighed in on this subject.  As an example, please see Dr. Eoin O'Brien's excellent article in Hypertension a Journal of the American Heart Association titled "Is the Case for ABPM as Routine Investigation in Clinical Practice Not Overwhelming?"  We could not agree more.

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