Surgeons and Surgical Trainees Underestimate the Total Charges and Reimbursements Associated With Commonly Performed General Surgery Procedures✰.

Abstract:

INTRODUCTION:Surgical care contributes significantly to the fiscal challenges facing the US health care system. Multiple studies have demonstrated surgeons' lack of awareness of the costs associated with individual portions of surgical care, namely operating room supplies. We sought to assess surgeon and trainee awareness of the comprehensive charges and reimbursements associated with procedures they perform. METHODS:We administered a voluntary anonymous survey to attending surgeons, general surgery residents, and fourth-year medical students who applied to general surgery residencies. We compared charge and reimbursement estimates for laparoscopic cholecystectomy and open inguinal hernia repair to the actual values. Additionally, we assessed the importance placed on the financial aspects of surgical care. RESULTS:We had an overall response rate of 94% (n = 45). A majority of attendings, residents, and medical students underestimated charges and reimbursements for open inguinal hernia repair and laparoscopic cholecystectomy. There was no significant difference in the accuracy of charge or reimbursement estimates between attendings, residents, and students for herniorrhaphy or cholecystectomy (Charge: hernia p = 0.08, cholecystectomy p = 0.30; Reimbursement: hernia p = 0.47, cholecystectomy p = 0.89). Years of training as an attending or resident did not predict accuracy of charge or reimbursement estimates for hernia repair or cholecystectomy (p > 0.3 for all regressions). The median (interquartile range) charge estimate for inguinal hernia repair was -$5914 (-$7914 to -$2914) from the actual charge, 45.8% of the true value, and the median reimbursement estimate was -$4519 (-$5369 to -$1218) from actual reimbursement, 27.3% of the true value. The median charge estimate for cholecystectomy was -$5734 (-$8733 to +$1266) from the actual charge, 58.3% of the true value, and the median reimbursement estimate was -$4847 (-$6847 to +$153) from actual reimbursement, 38.2% of the true value. CONCLUSIONS:Surgeons and their trainees underestimate the charges and reimbursements associated with commonly performed procedures.

journal_name

J Surg Educ

authors

Paine AN,Krompf BL,Osler TM,Hebert JC

doi

10.1016/j.jsurg.2018.11.001

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

2019-01-01 00:00:00

pages

802-807

issue

3

eissn

1931-7204

issn

1878-7452

pii

S1931-7204(18)30454-9

journal_volume

76

pub_type

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