IV Diuresis in Alternative Treatment Settings for the Management of Heart Failure: Implications for Mortality, Hospitalizations, and Cost

Link to article at PubMed

J Card Fail. 2023 Sep 13:S1071-9164(23)00320-2. doi: 10.1016/j.cardfail.2023.07.017. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: Recent advances in heart failure (HF) care have sought to shift management from inpatient to outpatient and observation settings. We evaluated the association between HF treatment in the (1) inpatient; (2) observation; (3) emergency department (ED); and (4) outpatient settings with 30-day mortality, hospitalizations, and cost.

METHODS: Using 100% Medicare inpatient, outpatient, and Part B files from 2011-2018, 1,534,708 unique patient encounters in which intravenous (IV) diuretics were received for a primary diagnosis of HF were identified. Encounters were sorted into mutually exclusive settings: (1) inpatient; (2) observation; (3) ED; or (4) outpatient IV diuretic clinic. The primary outcome was 30-day all-cause mortality. Secondary outcomes included 30-day hospitalization and total 30-day costs. Multivariable logistic and linear regression were used to examine the association between treatment location and the primary and secondary outcomes.

RESULTS: Patients treated in observation and outpatient settings had lower 30-day mortality rates (Observation OR 0.67, 95% CI 0.66-0.69, p < 0.001; Outpatient OR 0.53, 95% CI 0.51-0.55, p < 0.001) compared to those treated in the inpatient setting. Observation and outpatient treatment were also associated with decreased 30-day total cost compared to inpatient treatment (Observation relative cost -$5,528.77, 95% CI $-$5,613.63 to -$5,443.92; Outpatient relative cost -$7,005.95; 95% CI -$7,103.94 to -$6,907.96). Patients treated in the ED and discharged had increased mortality (OR 1.15, 95% CI 1.13-1.17, p < 0.001) and increased rates of hospitalization (OR 1.72, 95% CI 1.70-1.73, p < 0.001) compared to patients treated as inpatients.

CONCLUSIONS: Medicare beneficiaries who received IV diuresis for acute HF in the outpatient and observation settings had lower mortality and decreased cost of care compared to patients treated as inpatients. Outpatient and observation management of acute decompensated HF, when available, is a safe and cost-effective strategy in certain populations of patients with HF.

PMID:37714260 | DOI:10.1016/j.cardfail.2023.07.017

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