iLoveBenefits: Industry News Blog

AHRQ Finds Hospital Readmission Rates High Among Medicaid “Super-Utilizers”

Medicaid “super-utilizers” accounted for half of all 30-day hospital readmissions for the Medicaid population in 2012, with a readmission rate nearly six times as high as that for other Medicaid patients, a new statistical brief from AHRQ concludes. Super-utilizers, or patients who had four or more hospital admissions annually, are a relatively small group of patients who account for a disproportionately large share of hospital services and costs. The authors examined data from AHRQ’s Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project and found that the 30-day all-cause readmission rate among super-utilizers was 52.4 percent compared with 8.8 percent for other Medicaid patients. Medicaid super-utilizers’ hospital stays also were longer and more expensive. The two most common reasons for hospitalization among these patients were mood disorders, and schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders.  Medicaid is the largest public health insurance program in the United States, with more than 67 million beneficiaries. The statistical brief is titled, “Characteristics of Hospital Stays for Nonelderly Medicaid Super-Utilizers, 2012.”

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