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Do specialty heart hospitals drive up heart care use? Study suggests the answer is yes

with a 23 percent rise in areas where a general hospital offered new heart services, and a 24.8 percent rise in areas where no new services began.

"We're not saying that specialty cardiac hospitals are bad, nor that they provide services inappropriately," says John Birkmeyer, M.D., a U-M professor of general surgery who has studied many surgical utilization issues.

"Nonetheless, our findings suggest that patients treated there are more likely to be treated with invasive interventions than at general hospitals. Payers in markets served by specialty hospitals can also expect higher overall costs associated with more procedures."


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Contact: Kara Gavin
kegavin@umich.edu
734-764-2220
University of Michigan Health System
6-Mar-2007


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