Home >  News >  July, 2014

Healthcare Reform's Elective Surgery Effects

More insured patients equals greater surgical demand, say researchers.

Published: July 2, 2014

The Affordable Care Act's expansion of the insured patient population could mean booming business for elective surgery providers in the next few years, say researchers at the University of Michigan.

The researchers based this prediction, published online by JAMA Surgery, on surgical utilization trends in Massachusetts, which enacted statewide health insurance reform 4 years before the federal legislation was signed into law in 2010.

They reviewed patient databases from Massachusetts to identify adult patients who had undergone discretionary surgeries (such as elective joint replacements or back procedures) and nondiscretionary surgeries (such as cancer treatments or hip fracture repairs) between 2003 and 2010, a timespan that saw the state's reforms take effect. Patient databases from New York and New Jersey, 2 states which had not enacted statewide reforms, were used as a control group.

Insurance expansion was associated with a 9.3% increase in discretionary surgery in Massachusetts and a 4.5% decrease in nondiscretionary surgery, the researchers note, projecting an additional 465,934 discretionary surgeries on the schedule by 2017.

David Bernard


Also in the News...

A Colonoscope You Won't Have to Reprocess
Simethicone in Scopes Could Pose Infection Risk
Clinic Where Joan Rivers Was Stricken Sues Its Insurance Carrier
How Well Do PONV Predicting Systems Work?
Is Medicare Ready to Reimburse Outpatient Knee Replacement?
$22 Million Suit: 2 Dropped Instruments Left Patient Paralyzed
Study: UV Lamps Reduce Bacteria on Computer Keyboards by 99%

New to Outpatient Surgery Magazine?
Sign-up to continue reading this article.
Register Now
Have an account? Please log in:
Email Address:
  Remember my login on this computer

advertiser banner

Other Articles That May Interest You

When Small Hospitals Outperform Big Hospitals

Study shows several common procedures performed at rural facilities are safer and less expensive.

Anesthesiologist Accused of Failing to Respond While Woman, 29, Slipped Away

Wrongful death suit also questions how well equipped freestanding surgical centers are to handle emergencies.

Drug Diversion in Our ORs