Feb. 7—The proportion of Medicare beneficiaries who died in acute-care hospitals decreased between 2000 and 2009, according to a report in The Journal of the American Medical Association.
However, both ICU use and the rate of healthcare transitions increased in the last month of life during this period. Also, an increase in the number of short hospice stays following a hospitalization, often involving an ICU stay, suggest increasing hospice use may not lead to a reduction in resource use, the report said.
The report compared data from a random sample of 85,000 fee-for-service Medicare beneficiaries, aged 66 years and older, who died in 2000, 2005, or 2009.
Publication Date: Thursday, February 07, 2013