Intense End-of-Life Care Found to Be Less Likely for VA Patients

Share this content:
Intense End-of-Life Care Found to Be Less Likely for VA Patients
Intense End-of-Life Care Found to Be Less Likely for VA Patients

TUESDAY, Jan. 9, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Higher-intensity end-of-life care may be driven by financial incentives present in fee-for-service Medicare but not in the Veteran Affairs (VA) integrated system, according to a report published in the January issue of Health Affairs.

Risha Gidwani-Marszowski, Dr. P.H., from the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System in Menlo Park, Calif., and colleagues used indicators of overly intensive end-of-life care to compare the quality of care provided to veterans dying of cancer through the VA system and fee-for-service Medicare in fiscal years 2010 to 2014.

The researchers found that Medicare-reliant veterans were significantly more likely to receive high-intensity care, in the form of chemotherapy, hospital stays, admission to the intensive care unit, more days spent in the hospital, and death in the hospital. However, compared to VA-reliant patients, Medicare-reliant veterans were significantly less likely to have multiple emergency department visits. The investigators suggested that financial incentives may drive higher-intensity end-of-life care in fee-for-service Medicare but not in the VA integrated system.

"After adjusting for a variety of covariates shown to influence selection into the VA versus Medicare, we found veterans with solid tumors treated under fee-for-service Medicare were more likely to get unduly intensive health care at the end of life compared to those treated by the VA," the authors write. "To avoid putting VA-reliant veterans at risk of receiving lower-quality care, VA care-purchasing programs should develop coordination and quality monitoring programs to guard against overly intensive end-of-life care."

Abstract/Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

Share this content:

is free, fast, and customized just for you!

Already a member?

Sign In Now »

Drug Lookup

Browse drugs by: BrandGenericDisease


Sign up for myCME e-newsletters


More in Home

Lap Sleeve Gastrectomy, RYGB Equally Effective in Weight Loss

Lap Sleeve Gastrectomy, RYGB Equally Effective in Weight ...

Studies show no significant difference in BMI loss at five years between these laparoscopic procedures

ASCO: Liquid Biopsy Accurate for Detecting Colorectal Cancer

ASCO: Liquid Biopsy Accurate for Detecting Colorectal Cancer

Novel assay to detect circulating tumor cells has high sensitivity, specificity for precancerous lesions

Speech Outcomes Can Be Predicted After Cochlear Implant

Speech Outcomes Can Be Predicted After Cochlear Implant

Regions of brain that were unaffected by auditory deprivation provide most precise prediction results

is free, fast, and customized just for you!

Already a member?

Sign In Now »