Impact of In-Hospital Death on Spending for Bereaved Spouses.

TitleImpact of In-Hospital Death on Spending for Bereaved Spouses.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsOrnstein, KA, Garrido, MM, Siu, AL, Bollens-Lund, E, Langa, KM, Kelley, AS
JournalHealth Services Research
Volume53
IssueSuppl_1
Pagination2696-2717
ISSN Number1475-6773
KeywordsBereavement, End of life decisions, Medicare linkage, Medicare/Medicaid/Health Insurance
Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To examine how patients' location of death relates to health care utilization and spending for surviving spouses.

DATA SOURCES/STUDY SETTING: Health and Retirement Study (HRS) 2000-2012 linked to the Dartmouth Atlas and Medicare claims data.

STUDY DESIGN: This was an observational study. We matched bereaved spouses whose spouses died in a hospital to those whose spouses died outside the hospital using propensity scores based on decedent and spouse demographic and clinical characteristics, care preferences, and regional practice patterns.

DATA COLLECTION/EXTRACTION METHODS: We identified 1,348 HRS decedents with surviving spouses. We linked HRS data from each dyad with Medicare claims and regional characteristics.

PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In multivariable models, bereaved spouses of decedents who died in the hospital had $3,106 higher Medicare spending 12 months postdeath (p = .04) compared to those whose spouses died outside a hospital. Those surviving spouses were also significantly more likely to have an ED visit (OR = 1.5; p < .01) and hospital admission (OR = 1.4; p = .02) in the year after their spouse's in-hospital death. Increased Medicare spending for surviving spouses persisted through the 24-month period postdeath ($5,310; p = .02).

CONCLUSIONS: Bereaved spouses of decedents who died in the hospital had significantly greater Medicare spending and health care utilization themselves after their spouses' death.

DOI10.1111/1475-6773.12841
User Guide Notes

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29488621?dopt=Abstract

Alternate JournalHealth Serv Res
Citation Key9553
PubMed ID29488621
PubMed Central IDPMC6056590