Incentives to Transfer Patients Under Alternative Reimbursement Mechanisms

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Christopher J Ruhm, Jefferson-Pilot Excellence Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: Alternative hospital reimbursement systems may influence the frequency and timing of patient transfers between hospitals as well as the patient's length of stay. This paper examines the characteristics of reimbursement systems that result in efficient and equitable transfers and efficient lengths of stay. Except in special cases, there is a tradeoff between achieving these three objectives. If patient benefits or receiving hospital profits are undervalued, then achieving efficient transfer decisions generally requires the reimbursement of the sending hospital to depend upon some weighted average of its own marginal costs and the costs of the receiving hospital.

Additional Information

Journal of Public Economics, Vol. 37, December 1988, 381-94.
Language: English
Date: 1988
Transfer patients, Reimbursement, Health care, Quality evaluation

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