The Economic Impact of Motor Vehicle Crashes: The Cost of Restrained versus Unrestrained Occupants in South Carolina

Gill, Satinderjit S.; Jakub, James W.; Pease, Mary C.; Woolen, Claude D.
June 2002
American Surgeon;Jun2002, Vol. 68 Issue 6, p569
Academic Journal
The purpose of our study was to evaluate the difference in hospital charges between restrained and unrestrained motor vehicle occupants. We were also interested in identifying whether a relationship existed between restraint usage and insurance status. The data for this study were collected from two sources. The 1998 and 1999 Crash Outcome Data Evaluation System was used to compare the hospital charges and restraint usage for all motor vehicle crashes in the state of South Carolina. The patient's insurance status was also analyzed. The hospital charges and restraint usage were also compared from one of the state's Level I trauma centers for the year 1999. These data were prospectively collected and retrospectively reviewed. The average inpatient hospital charges for the state of South Carolina were approximately 25 per cent greater or $4500 more per admission for an unrestrained versus a restrained occupant. There also appears to be a relationship between payer status and restraint usage. Medicaid and self-pay patients were least likely to be using a restraining device at the time of a motor vehicle crash. The data from a Level I trauma center showed similar but more dramatic trends. Hospital charges for unrestrained occupants were 87 per cent higher than those for restrained occupants, which translates into a cost difference of $22,358 per hospital admission. This study highlights the significant economic impact of a simple preventative strategy. The cost savings for a single Level I trauma center translate into almost 9.4 million dollars for a single year. There also appears to be a relationship between usage of a restraining device and payer status.


Related Articles

  • Spotting errors in hospital bills. Weaver, Peter // Nation's Business;Oct93, Vol. 81 Issue 10, p74 

    Provides tips on checking hospital bills for erroneous charges. Blame on numerous insurance companies that hospitals have to deal with; Keeping of a log of all procedures and items used; Member of family as bill-monitoring advocate; Instruction and support from company health plan's insurance...

  • Hospital prices rise. J.A. // AHA News;3/4/96, Vol. 32 Issue 9, p4 

    Reports on the increase in overall prices for hospital services in the United States between December 1995 and January 1996.

  • The cost of hospital rooms.  // Self;Dec93, Vol. 15 Issue 12, p98 

    Compares the costs of semiprivate hospital rooms in cities across the United States. Differences in city cost of a hospital room in Chicago and Evanston, Illinois; Boulder and Denver, Colorado; Miami and Hollywood, Florida; San Francisco and Palo Alto, California.

  • Hospital, physician producer price index.  // Modern Healthcare;10/24/94, Vol. 24 Issue 43, p38 

    Presents a tabular representation of the hospital, physician producer index for the month of September 1994. Measurement of hospital charges for one episode of care.

  • N.Y. nears deal to deregulate hospitals. Bryant-Friedland, Bruce // Modern Healthcare;7/08/96, Vol. 26 Issue 28, p6 

    Reports on New York state lawmakers' nearing of a deal for the replacement of the state's hospital rate-setting system. Expected effect of the deal on free-market competition; Comments of Kenneth Raske, president of the Greater New York Hospital Association; Effectivity of the deal.

  • Acts of goodwill. Newnham, David // Nursing Standard;4/30/2014, Vol. 28 Issue 35, p29 

    Wealth makes us poor in spirit, says David Newnham.

  • Finance.  // H&HN: Hospitals & Health Networks;6/5/93, Vol. 67 Issue 11, p18 

    Reports on undercharging of hospital patients base on a hospital billing practices study by Evanston. Percent of the accounts undercharged patients; Percent with overcharges; Percent with errors and those without errors.

  • Interest rates.  // Modern Healthcare;5/13/96, Vol. 26 Issue 20, p48 

    Features the interest rates for various types of hospitals as of May 6, 1996. Current rate; One year ago.

  • Anatomy of a hospital bill.  // Consumer Reports;Nov93, Vol. 58 Issue 11, p736 

    Analyzes the features of a hospital bill for a colonoscopy, a procedure to detect colon cancer. Payment by insurer; Contribution of hospitals to health-care costs; Canada's single-payer system; President Bill Clinton's proposed health-care plan; Endoscopy room charge; Colonoscopy charge; Video...

  • CORRECTIONS & CLARIFICATIONS.  // Modern Healthcare;3/7/2005, Vol. 35 Issue 10, p17 

    Presents corrections to articles published in the February 14 and 28, 2004 issues of the periodical "Modern Healthcare" including the article "Changing Venues."


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics