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Paper #1582

The effect of changing the number of elective hospital admissions on the levels of emergency provision
Sergi Jiménez-Martín, Catia Nicodemo i Stuart Redding
Setembre 2017
In England as elsewhere, policy makers are trying to reduce the pressure on costs caused by rising hospital admissions by encouraging GPs to refer less patients to hospital specialists.This could have an impact on elective treatment levels, particularly procedures for conditions which are not life-threatening and can be delayed or perhaps withheld entirely. This study attempts to identify the potential consequences on levels of emergency treatment if elective care is managed downwards. Using administrative data from Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) in England we estimate dynamic fixed effects panel data models for emergency admissions at Primary Care Trust and Hospital Trust levels for the years 200413, controlling for a group of area-specific characteristics and other secondary care variables. We find that increasing levels of elective care tends to increase the future requirement for emergency treatment. While there is no guarantee that the positive correlation between emergency and elective activity will persist if policy is effective in reducing levels of elective treatment, it does suggest that the cost-saving benefits to the NHS from reducing elective treatment may not be as great in aggregate as anticipated.
Paraules clau:
Health care services, elective and emergency hospital admissions, secondary care, NHS, dynamic panel data
Codis JEL:
I11, I 18, C30, C33
Àrea de Recerca:
Economia Laboral, Pública, de Desenvolupament i de la Salut / Estadística, Econometria i Mètodes Quantitatius

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