In the Veterans Health Administration (VHA), rehabilitation settings range from outpatient clinics to hospital-based inpatient care. Many patients who have a stroke require some rehabilitation care, and the differences in the costs of care across different settings can be substantial. This study compared the costs of care in acute versus subacute rehabilitation bedservice units (ARBUs vs SRBUs) within the VHA. After we controlled for factors that influence costs, we found that the hospital-based ARBUs had lower index-stay costs than nonhospital SRBUs and that these lower costs appear to be achieved through shorter lengths of stay. Moreover, the lower costs observed in ARBUs in this study combined with the higher rates of guideline compliance and improved outcomes in ARBUs found in previous studies suggest that stroke rehabilitation in an ARBU may be more cost-effective than stroke rehabilitation in an SRBU.
Volume 47 Number 5, 2010
Pages 431 — 440
Last Reviewed or Updated Friday, July 30, 2010 12:31 PM