Hospital Readmissions Involving Psychiatric Disorders

HCUP Statistical Brief #189

In 2012, nearly one-fourth of adults in the United States experienced some form of mental or substance use disorder (M/SUD). Many patients who experience M/SUDs are hospitalized for those conditions. Between 2003 and 2011, hospitalization for mental disorders increased at a faster rate than for any other type of hospitalization (i.e., medical, surgical, injury, maternal/neonatal).

Mood disorders and schizophrenia (and other psychotic disorders) were the two most frequent principal diagnoses among hospitalizations involving M/SUD conditions in 2011. Among all hospitalizations in 2011, the sixth most common diagnosis was mood disorders, accounting for nearly 900,000 hospital stays. In addition, mood disorders were the most common reason for hospitalization among children aged 1-17 years.

Hospital Readmissions Involving Psychiatric Disorders, a statistical brief from the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project, presents data on hospital readmissions for mood disorders and schizophrenia. The brief provides statistics on utilization and costs for hospital inpatient stays for mood disorders and schizophrenia compared with stays for non-M/SUD conditions, along with the rate and cost of readmissions occurring within 30 days of initial hospitalization.

Highlights

  • In 2012, there were approximately 847,000 hospital stays for mood disorders and 383,000 stays for schizophrenia.
  • Within 30 days, 9.0 percent of initial inpatient stays for mood disorders were readmitted with a principal diagnosis of mood disorders, 12.6 percent were readmitted with any diagnosis of mood disorders, and 15.0 percent were readmitted for any cause.
  • Within 30 days, 15.7 percent of initial inpatient stays for schizophrenia were readmitted with a principal diagnosis of schizophrenia, 18.6 percent were readmitted with any diagnosis of schizophrenia, and 22.4 percent were readmitted for any cause.
  • Only 1.0-1.6 percent of stays for mood disorders or schizophrenia involved home health care following discharge, compared with 14.1 percent of stays for conditions other than M/SUDs.
  • Average hospital costs for mood disorders and schizophrenia were lower than average costs for non-M/SUD stays, for the initial stay and for 30-day readmissions.
  • Compared with initial stays for mood disorders, average hospital costs were higher for readmissions involving mood disorders and for readmissions for any cause ($7,100 and $7,200, respectively, vs. $5,800).
  • Patients covered by Medicare or Medicaid had higher rates of 30-day readmission involving mood disorders or schizophrenia than did privately insured and uninsured patients (approximately 40-75 percent higher).

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Page last reviewed May 2015
Internet Citation: Hospital Readmissions Involving Psychiatric Disorders: HCUP Statistical Brief #189. May 2015. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/news/hcup.html