Shorter Hospital Stay, Less Cost with Oral Nutritional Supplements

Medical expenses are unavoidable especially when you have ageing family members along with children who are prone to viruses as well as unexpected accidents. Accepting these realities as an inevitability, the effort should now be on how to reduce these expenses as well as added unnecessary expenses. The study below may help alleviate financial drain during these trying times by speeding up recovery and plugging a cork on the unending cash out flow.

A study was made regarding hospitalization stay and cost reduction due to oral nutritional supplements. In this new health economics outcomes study, conducted by leading health economists and supported by Abbott,  it was found that oral nutritional supplements provided to patients during hospitalization are associated with significant reductions in length of stay and hospitalization cost. Additionally, the 30-day readmission risk was significantly reduced for patients with at least one known subsequent readmission. 

Published in the American Journal of Managed Care, (Feb 2013) the study provides insights into the economic benefits of prescribing oral nutritional supplements to adult patients in the hospital setting. 

The retrospective analysis utilized information from more than one million adult inpatient cases found in the 2000-2010 Premier Research Database maintained by the Premier healthcare alliance —representing a total of 44 million hospital episodes from across the United States or approximately 20 percent of all inpatient admissions in the U.S.

Benefits associated with patients provided oral nutrition supplementsduring hospitalization included 21% or 2.3 days reduction in length of stay and 21.6% or $4,734, reduction in patient hospitalization cost.  

Additionally, there was a 6.7% reduction in the probability of a 30-day readmission in patients who had at least one known subsequent readmission and were provided oral nutrition supplements during the previous hospitalization.

″Impaired nutritional status, especially in patients recovering from serious illnesses or surgery, can result in longer hospital stays; an increase in complication rates, higher readmission rates, and associated health care costs, ″ says Dr. Marianna Sioson, president of the Philippine Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition.  ″Research shows that using oral nutritional supplements can help reduce their length of stay and associated hospital costs.  This is indeed good news for the 4 out of 10 hospitalized Filipino patients who are nutritionally at-risk since most of them shoulder their hospital expenses out of their own pockets.”

In the study, investigators were able to determine differences in length of stay and costs by comparing hospital stays where oral nutritional supplements were prescribed to stays of similar conditions where oral nutritional supplements weren’t prescribed. 

″In an increasingly cost-pressured environment, health economics assessments can more comprehensively determine a therapy’s true value. Our results point to the tangible benefits of inpatient oral nutritional supplements on health outcomes and cost of care, factors that impact a hospital’s bottom line,” said study co-author, Darius Lakdawalla PhD, Quintiles Chair in Pharmaceutical Development and Regulatory Innovation, USC School of Pharmacy, and Sol Price School of Public Policy, and Director of Research, Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics, University of Southern California

″Because oral nutrition supplements are formulated to provide advanced nutrition and calories for compromised patients and are relatively inexpensive to provide, the sizeable savings they generate make supplementation a cost-effective therapy,″ said study co-author, Tomas Philipson PhD, Daniel Levin Chair of Public Policy at the University of Chicago. 

About the Study

The ″Impact of Oral Nutritional Supplementation on Hospital Outcomes” study is a retrospective data analysis on the effect of oral nutritional supplements on hospital economic outcomes. The study compared hospital stays where oral nutritional supplements were provided with similar hospital stays that did not provide oral nutritional supplements. The difference between length of hospital stay and cost of treatment (including supplies, labor, depreciation of equipment, etc.) were measured.  The probability of 30-day hospital readmission also was calculated.

About Abbott Nutrition

For more than 85 years, Abbott Nutrition has been developing and marketing science-based nutritional products to support the growth, health and wellness of people of all ages. Internationally recognized brands include the Similac® brand of infant formulas; the Gain® brand of growing-up milks; the PediaSure® brand of complete and balanced nutrition for children; and the Ensure® brand of complete and balanced oral nutritional supplements for adults.

The company is a leader in nutritional products clinically shown to address the distinct dietary needs of people with serious health conditions or special nutrient requirements, such as the Glucerna® brand of nutrition shakes and bars for people with diabetes. 

About Abbott

Abbott is a global healthcare company devoted to improving life through the development of products and technologies that span the breadth of healthcare. With a portfolio of leading, science-based offerings in diagnostics, medical devices, nutritionals and branded generic pharmaceuticals, Abbott serves people in more than 150 countries and employs approximately 69,000 people. 

Visit Abbott at and connect with us on Twitter at @AbbottNews.

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