Value-Based Care Has Not Resulted in Biased Patient Selection: Analysis of a Single Center's Experience in the Care for Joint Replacement Bundle.
BACKGROUND: Bundled reimbursement models for total knee arthroplasty (TKA) by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services have resulted in an effort to decrease the cost of care. However, these models may incentivize bias in patient selection to avoid excess cost of care. We sought to determine the impact of the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement (CJR) model at a single center. METHODS: This is a retrospective review of primary TKA patients from July 2015 to December 2017. Patients were stratified by whether or not their surgery was performed before or after implementation of the CJR bundle. Patient demographic data including age, sex, and body mass index were collected in addition to Elixhauser comorbidities and American Society of Anesthesiologists score. In-hospital outcomes were then examined including surgery duration, length of stay, discharge disposition, and direct cost of care. RESULTS: A total of 1248 TKA patients (546 Medicare and 702 commercial insurance) were evaluated, with 27.0% undergoing surgery before the start of the bundle. Compared to patients following implementation of the bundle, there was no significant difference in age, gender, or body mass index. However, pre-CJR Medicare patients were more likely to have fewer Elixhauser comorbidities (P < .001), prolonged length of stay (P < .001), and greater discharges to inpatient facilities (P = .019). There was no significant difference in direct hospital costs or operative service time comparing pre-bundle and post-bundle patients. CONCLUSION: Implementation of the bundled reimbursement model did not result in biased patient selection at our institution; importantly, it also did not result in decreased hospital costs despite apparent improvement in value-based outcome metrics. This should be taken into consideration as future adaptations to reimbursement are made by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Ryan, SP; Plate, JF; Black, CS; Howell, CB; Jiranek, WA; Bolognesi, MP; Seyler, TM
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