U.S. News & World Report
examines cost, frequency, and outcomes studies on Medicare patients from the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice : “The Dartmouth research is particularly relevant to older Americans because it is based to a large extent on Medicare data, involving patients ages 65 and older. The 2008 atlas, in particular, paints a devastating portrait of Medicare treatments based on an extensive study of Medicare recipients who died from one or more of nine chronic illnesses. Not only are chronic illnesses very expensive to treat, but they're also the cause of most deaths in the United States. According to the 2008 atlas: More than 90 million Americans live with at least one chronic illness, and 7 out of 10 Americans die from chronic disease. Among the population that receives Medicare, the toll is even greater: About 9 out of 10 deaths are associated with just nine chronic illnesses: congestive heart failure, chronic lung disease, cancer, coronary artery disease, renal failure, peripheral vascular disease, diabetes, chronic liver disease, and dementia.”
U.S. World & News Report lists the 10 hospitals with the highest out-of-pocket Medicare copays per patient for hospital and physician services (6 of the 10 are in South Florida); the 10 hospitals with the highest Medicare spending per chronically ill patients in the last two years of life (4 are in New York City); and the 10 hospitals with the highest volume of care (5 are in the New York City/New Jersey area) (Moeller, 7/7).