News: Blue Cross Blue Shield Association Study Shows How Consumers Save with Shift to Outpatient Care
February 24, 2016
OVERVIEW: Data show significant savings for consumers and payers
A new study by the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) demonstrates how much consumers and payers save when medical procedures shift from an inpatient to an outpatient setting.
The study, “How Consumers Are Saving with the Shift to Outpatient Care,” examines four common shoppable procedures – hysterectomy, lumbar/spine surgery, angioplasty and gallbladder removal – from 2010 to 2014. These four procedures cost Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies, their members and employers nationwide an estimated $11 billion in 2014.
KEY FINDINGS: Patients who utilized outpatient procedures saved money in 2014:
$320 on average for lumbar/spine surgeries
$483 for hysterectomies
$924 for gallbladder removals
$1,062 for angioplasties
For appropriate patients, outpatient surgery has been shown to be safe and effective, achieving similar or better outcomes as inpatient procedures while allowing patients to spend less time in a medical facility, recover faster and incur less pain. Spine surgery and angioplasty have been shown to be safe and are associated with similar or better outcomes in the outpatient setting. Additionally, outpatient hysterectomy was found to have fewer 30-day complications, lower risk of perioperative morbidity, less risk of wound complications and other medical complications compared to inpatient, even after adjusting for demographic and operative differences between the two groups.
The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 36 independent, community-based and locally operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide healthcare coverage for more than 106 million members — one in three Americans.
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