Possible Implications for Bundled Payment Models of Comorbidities and Complications as Drivers of Cost in Total Ankle Arthroplasty.
BACKGROUND:: The Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement (CJR) model provides bundled payments for in-hospital and 90-day postdischarge care of patients undergoing total ankle arthroplasty (TAA). Defining patient factors associated with increased costs during TAA could help identify modifiable preoperative patient factors that could be addressed prior to the patient entering the bundle, as well as determine targets for cost reduction in postoperative care. METHODS:: This study is part of an institutional review board-approved single-center observational study of patients undergoing TAA from January 1, 2012, to December 15, 2016. Patients were included if they met CJR criteria for inclusion into the bundled payment model. All Medicare payments beginning at the index procedure through 90 days postoperatively were identified. Patient, operative, and postoperative characteristics were associated with costs in adjusted, multivariable analyses. One hundred thirty-seven patients met inclusion criteria for the study. RESULTS:: Cerebrovascular disease (intracranial hemorrhages, strokes, or transient ischemic attacks) was initially associated with increased costs (mean, $5595.25; 95% CI, $1710.22-$9480.28) in adjusted analyses ( P = .005), though this variable did not meet a significance threshold adjusted for multiple comparisons. Increased length of stay, discharge to a skilled nursing facility (SNF), admissions, emergency department (ED) visits, and wound complications were significant postoperative drivers of payment. CONCLUSION:: Common comorbidities did not reliably predict increased costs. Increased length of stay, discharge to an SNF, readmission, ED visits, and wound complications were postoperative factors that considerably increased costs. Lastly, reducing the rates of SNF placement, readmission, ED visitation, and wound complications are targets for reducing costs for patients undergoing TAA. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE:: Level II, prognostic prospective cohort study.
Cunningham, D; Karas, V; DeOrio, JK; Nunley, JA; Easley, ME; Adams, SB
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