Disability and rehabilitation vol:27 issue:18-19 pages:1129-41
PURPOSE: To summarize the reported short- and long-term costs associated with hip fracture occurrence in old age, based on a systematic literature review of published studies. A further aim is to provide a clinician-oriented discussion of the different types of economic evaluations, with an emphasis on studies that examined potential determinants of the costs of care after hip fracture. METHOD: Literature review. MAIN RESULTS: Even after the initial hospitalization, hip fractures continue to generate significant costs throughout the one-year period after discharge, but particularly during the first three months. Cost estimates based on data obtained prospectively from hip-fracture patients and matched controls showed that the costs associated with the treatment of hip-fracture patients are about three times greater than those resulting from the treatment of age and residence-matched controls without a fracture. Two-fifths of these excess costs are incurred during the first three months following hospital discharge. Increasing age at the time of injury and living in an institution before the fracture are among the most important determinants of an increased cost of care after hospital discharge. Programs that focus on continuity of care, adopt a multidisciplinary approach, and accelerate rehabilitation have shown to be able to reduce the cost of care after hip fracture. CONCLUSIONS: This review emphasizes the importance of current and future interventions to decrease the incidence of hip fracture. While the current review cannot provide definite answers to the questions of cost containment, our review provides critically important evidence about the need to base health policy decisions on empirical observations. Comprehensive economic analyses of financial costs and health outcomes are needed to develop cost-effective strategies.