Treating the costliest Medicare patients in doctors' offices instead of emergency rooms or hospitals whenever possible may not save as much money as originally hoped, according to a new study.
After analyzing recent data on more than one million Medicare patients, researchers found that only about a tenth of the money spent on the program's most expensive patients was for care that could be provided without a trip to the hospital.
"I think it's a more complicated problem than we thought," said Dr. Karen Joynt, the study's lead author, from Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston.
Source: Reuters. Read full article. (link)