Healthcare Burden of Inpatient Hospitalization

Henry Nasrallah, MD, provides insight on why inpatient hospitalization is viewed as a burden for patients and healthcare providers as well as the economic burden on the healthcare institution.

Henry Nasrallah, MD: Inpatient hospitalization [for the treatment of schizophrenia or other mental illnesses] is a burden for a variety of stakeholders. It’s stigmatizing and overwhelming for many of the patients. The family also experiences a burden seeing their loved ones in the hospital with acute psychotic episodes. The system is burdened because inpatient hospitalization is extremely expensive; it is the single-most expensive item in the care of patients with psychotic episodes. There’s also the issue of insurance coverage, which can be another burden for the family. Some families are not completely covered, but some are. In many hospitals, there’s sometimes rapid turnover of patients in the inpatient psychiatric setting. That can be an intensive work environment for the health care providers in the inpatient unit.

In terms of resources, inpatient hospitalization requires the medical staff to take care of the patient, but we also need health care coverage and resources to pay for the expensive cost of medical care, especially with inpatients—for direct care, evaluation, diagnosis, treatment, laboratory data, and ancillary services. There is a heavy cost issue associated with inpatient care.

Transcript Edited for Clarity

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