Switching to nonsurgical heart “valve” replacement may be costly to hospitals
by JONATHAN M. METSCH, DR.P.H., LLC
Jul 03, 2014 | 766 views | 0 0 comments | 3 3 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Most people don’t ask about price when faced with a critical health care decision, but we all have to learn to include this in the assessment of clinical options.

“Recently a Modern Healthcare article http://www.modernhealthcare.com reported “Results from the latest trial comparing nonsurgical implantation of a prosthetic transcatheter aortic valve replacement, or TAVR, with traditional surgical aortic valve replacement have raised the possibility that the new method could be used for a broader range of patients.”

“But shifting to wider TAVR device use could hurt hospitals financially because of their high cost.”

“Some experts say the latest results could promote expanded TAVR use among high-risk patients for whom surgery is an option. But others say the price of TAVR devices may deter providers if they can achieve the same or better results through surgery for that patient subgroup.”

“TAVR devices typically cost about $32,000, compared with surgical valves that average between $4,000 and $7,000, said Dr. Lars Svensson, director of quality and process improvement in the Cleveland Clinic's department of thoracic and cardiovascular surgery.”

Now that experts have created confusion, we will each have to rely on our primary care physician to determine what to do given the ambiguity over the "evidence."

* to read the full MHC article “Nonsurgical heart valve procedure spurs cost concerns” by Steven Ross Johnson highlight and click on open hyperlink http://www.modernhealthcare.com/article/20140329/MAGAZINE/303299961&utm_source=AltURL&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=am?AllowView=VXQ0UnpwZTVDZmFYL1I3TkErT1lBajNja0U4VUNlUlVFQk1HQlE9PQ==&utm_campaign=am

Note: This blog shares general information about understanding and navigating the health care system. For specific medical advice about your own problems, issues and options talk to your personal physician.

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