Association of readmission penalty amount with subsequent 30-day risk standardized readmission and mortality rates among patients hospitalized with heart failure: An analysis of get with the guidelines – heart failure participating centers

Kershaw V. Patel, Neil Keshvani, Ambarish Pandey, Muthiah Vaduganathan, Da Juanicia N. Holmes, Roland A. Matsouaka, Adam D. DeVore, Larry A. Allen, Clyde W. Yancy, Gregg C. Fonarow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: The Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program penalizes hospitals with excess 30-day risk-standardized readmission rates (RSRR) for heart failure (HF). The association of financial penalty amount with subsequent short-term clinical outcomes is unknown. Methods: Patients admitted to American Heart Association Get With The Guidelines-HF registry participating centers from October 1, 2012 through December 1, 2015 who had Medicare-linked data were included. October 2012 hospital-specific penalty amounts were calculated based on diagnosis-related group payments and excess readmission ratios. Adjusted Cox models were created to evaluate the association of penalty amount categories (non-penalized: 0%; low-penalized: >0%-<0.50%; mid-penalized ≥0.50%-<0.99%; high-penalized ≥0.99%) with subsequent 30-day RSRR and risk-standardized mortality rates (RSMR). Trends in post-discharge 30-day RSRR and RSMR from 2012 to 2015 were analyzed across hospitals stratified by penalty amount categories. Results: The present study included 61,329 patients who were admitted across 262 hospitals. Compared with patients admitted to non-penalized hospitals (36.3%), those admitted to increasingly penalized hospitals were more likely to have higher 30-day RSRR (low-penalized [43.9%]: HR, 1.10 [95% CI, 1.04-1.16]; mid-penalized [12.0%]: HR, 1.07 [95% CI, 0.99-1.16]; high-penalized [7.9%]: HR, 1.23 [95% CI, 1.12-1.35]) but not 30-day RSMR. Over time, 30-day RSRR and RSMR did not meaningfully change across penalized versus non-penalized hospitals. Conclusions: Financial penalties based on 30-day RSRR are not associated with declines in 30-day RSRR or RSMR from 2012 to 2015 among patients hospitalized with HF. Financially penalizing hospitals based on current Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program metrics may not incentivize improvements in short-term clinical outcomes for HF.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican heart journal
Volume246
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2022
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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