Methods for Analyzing Hospital Length of Stay with Application to Inpatients Dying in Southern Thailand

Apiradee Lim, Phattrawan Tongkumchum

Abstract


This study investigated length of stay (LOS) for patients who died in hospital in Southern Thailand from 2000 to 2003
with respect to principal diagnosis and demographic, geographic and hospital size factors. The computerized data of
40,498 mortality cases were obtained from the Ministry of Public Health from 167 hospitals in 14 provinces of Southern
Thailand between October 2000 and September 2003 with information on age, gender, principal diagnosis, province and
hospital size. Logistic and linear regression with log-transformed LOS was used to analyze the data. Patients with
injuries as principal diagnosis had shortest LOS, whereas cancer patients had the longest LOS. Older patients,
particularly females, had higher LOS for all diagnoses. LOS increased with hospital size except in the North and North
West. Small hospitals in the South West region had the lowest LOS whereas large hospitals in the North West had the
highest. The highest proportion of bed days (11.2%) occurred in males aged less than 60 diagnosed with infectious
diseases. Males aged less than 60 diagnosed with injuries and digestive diseases, and aged at least 60 diagnosed with
COPD, and aged less than 60 diagnosed with infectious diseases, accounted for more than double those for female
patients in the same disease groups. Both logistic regressions with LOS at least 1 week as the outcome and linear
regression on appropriately log transformed LOS gave consistent results. Providing suitable palliative care or allowing
patients to select the place for spending their final time of life, especially for patients with chronic diseases, which can
reduce hospital resource utilization.

Full Text: PDF DOI: 10.5539/gjhs.v1n1p27

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Global Journal of Health Science   ISSN 1916-9736(Print)   ISSN 1916-9744(Online)

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