(HealthDay News) — During 2002 to 2011, U.S. hospitals experienced productivity growth in treating Medicare patients with heart attack, heart failure and pneumonia, according to a study published in Health Affairs.
John A. Romley, PhD, from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, and colleagues examined productivity growth in treating Medicare patients with heart attack, heart failure and pneumonia during 2002 to 2011 among U.S. hospitals. The authors adjusted for trends in the severity of patients’ conditions and health outcomes.
The researchers found the rates of annual productivity growth to be 0.78%, 0.62% and 1.90% for heart attack, heart failure and pneumonia, respectively. The unadjusted productivity growth seemed to have been negative.
“These findings suggest that productivity growth in U.S. health care could be better than is sometimes believed, and may help alleviate concerns about Medicare payment policy under the Affordable Care Act,” the researchers wrote.