Long-Term Effect of Fee-For-Service–Based Reimbursement Cuts on Processes and Outcomes of Care for Stroke
Interrupted Time-Series Study From Taiwan
Background—As healthcare spending continues to increase, reimbursement cuts have become 1 type of healthcare reform to contain costs. Little is known about the long-term impact of cuts in reimbursement, especially under a global budget cap with fee-for-service (FFS) reimbursement, on processes and outcomes of care. The FFS-based reimbursement cuts have been implemented since July 2002 in Taiwan. We examined the long-term association of FFS-based reimbursement cuts with trends in processes and outcomes of care for stroke.
Methods and Results—We analyzed all 411 487 patients with stroke admitted to general acute care hospitals in Taiwan during the period 1997 to 2010 through Taiwan’s National Health Insurance Research Database. We used a quasi-experimental design with quarterly measures of healthcare utilization and outcomes and used segmented autoregressive integrated moving average models for the analysis. After accounting for secular trends and other confounders, the implementation of the FFS-based reimbursement cuts was associated with trend changes in computed tomography/magnetic resonance imaging scanning (0.31% per quarter; P=0.013), antiplatelet/anticoagulant use (−0.20% per quarter; P<0.001), statin use (0.18% per quarter; P=0.027), physiotherapy/occupational therapy assessment (0.25% per quarter; P<0.001), and 30-day mortality (0.06% per quarter; P<0.001).
Conclusions—There are improvement trends in processes and outcomes of care over time. However, the reimbursement cuts from the FFS-based global budget cap are associated with trend changes in processes and outcomes of care for stroke. The FFS-based reimbursement cuts may have long-term positive and negative associations with stroke care.
- Received April 29, 2014.
- Accepted November 10, 2014.
- © 2014 American Heart Association, Inc.