National Hospital Cost Data Collection (NHCDC) Public Sector Report 2014–15

Date published: 2 March 2017

This National Hospital Cost Data Collection (NHCDC) Public Sector Report includes the results of participation across the various jurisdictions. The report investigates questions relating to hospital costs for admitted, non-admitted and emergency department services. The report includes jurisdiction level data and the national cost weight tables.

These documents account for the hospital costs submitted by jurisdictions for the following activity streams: admitted acute, non-admitted, emergency department, mental health, subacute and non-acute.

The NHCDC Data Request Specifications (DRS) list the data elements to be submitted to IHACPA and include the validation rules which will be applied to the data on submission.

The purpose of this report is to provide an overview of costs as reported in the NHCDC Public Sector 2014-15. This report contains detailed analysis of the NHCDC Public Sector 2014-15 including:

  • summary tables at the national and jurisdiction level by admitted acute, subacute, non-admitted, emergency department and other products.
  • cost weight tables for actual and estimated admitted acute separations.

The NHCDC Public Sector 2014-15 includes costs from 358 hospitals, 84 less than in 2013-14. The total expenditure submitted to the NHCDC Public Sector 2014-15 was $35.6 billion, a 5.0 per cent increase from 2013-14.

Participation

The NHCDC Report 2014-15 includes costs from 358 hospitals, 84 less than in 2013-14.

Queensland was the primary contributor to this change with 92 fewer hospitals. These were primarily small rural hospitals and impacted the emergency department and non-admitted activity and expenditure. Victoria reported eight additional hospitals compared to 2013-14. The increase in Victorian hospital participation led to an increase in the proportion of admitted acute activity for which costs were submitted by 1.3 per cent to 93.6 per cent.

Figure 1 Rounds 17 to 19, number of participating hospitals by jurisdiction
Figure 1 Rounds 17 to 19, number of participating hospitals by jurisdiction

Total Expenditure

In the NHCDC Report 2014-15, total expenditure submitted was $35.6 billion, a 5.0 per cent increase over 2013-14.

Expenditure is split between five streams:

  • Admitted acute accounted for 74 per cent of total expenditure, reporting $26.4 billion from 345 hospitals. This represents a 6.2 per cent increase in expenditure over Round 18, with seven fewer hospitals reporting data.
  • ED expenditure accounted for $4.2 billion from 199 hospitals. This represents a 2.9 per cent increase in expenditure over Round 18, with 58 fewer hospitals reporting data.
  • Non-admitted expenditure accounted for $4.7 billion from 268 hospitals. This represents a 3.4 per cent increase in expenditure over Round 18, with 81 fewer hospitals reporting data.
  • Subacute and non-acute expenditure accounted for $2.3 billion from 331 hospitals. This represents a 3.0 per cent increase in expenditure over Round 18, with four fewer hospitals reporting data.
  • Other product expenditure accounted for $51.6 million from 193 hospitals. This represents a 29.3 per cent decrease in expenditure over Round 18, with five fewer hospitals reporting data.
Figure 2 Total expenditure and percentage movement by stream, Round 17 to 19
Figure 2 Total expenditure and percentage movement by stream, Round 17 to 19

Average costs

For the NHCDC, costs are reported at the patient level. This allows for the calculation of average costs per episode by product stream:

  • 5.2 million admitted acute separations were reported in 2014-15, an increase of 5.0 per cent over 2013-14. The average cost per admitted acute separation was $5,026, a 1.1 per cent increase on 2013-14.
  • 6.9 million ED presentations were reported in 2014-15, a decrease of 0.5 per cent over 2013-14. The average cost per presentations was $605, a 3.5 per cent increase on 2013-14;
  • 17.2 million non-admitted service events were reported in 2014-15, an increase of 7.4 per cent over 2013-14. The average cost per non-admitted service event was $272, a 3.7 per cent decrease on 2013-14;
  • 172,317 subacute and non-acute separations were reported in 2014-15, an increase of 3.0 per cent over 2013-14. The average cost per subacute separation did not change from 2013-14 and was $13,193;
  • 25,301 other product counts of activity were reported in Round 19, a decrease of 7.0 per cent over 2013-14.

Readers of the report are reminded that the results published should not be compared to the NEP. The NEP includes a series of adjustments to the NHCDC results to account for variations in the cost of delivering services, based on factors such as location, indigenous status and paediatrics.

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