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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 83-112

The influence of health economics on surgeon practice and hospital purchasing decisions: A survey of surgeons at the AO foundation davos courses

1 AO Clinical Investigation and Documentation (AOCID), Davos, Switzerland
2 Orthoevidence Inc., Burlington, Ontario, Canada

Correspondence Address:
Christopher Vannabouathong
3228 South Service Road, Suite 206, Burlington, Ontario L7N 3H8
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jmsr.jmsr_35_18

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Objectives: The survey was conducted to gain a current understanding of how economic evaluations affect surgeon practice and determine their role in hospital purchasing decisions. Methods: A total of 589 surgeons completed a survey on their experience with health economics and hospital purchasing decisions. Demographics and survey results were analyzed both qualitatively and quantitatively. Statistical testing was performed through Chi-square analysis. Results: Of all respondents, 89% and 83% were affected by economic topics at the department level and personally, respectively, within the year before the survey. Fifty-eight percent had discussed device costs with their Finance Department and 32% stopped using their preferred implant for financial reasons. Forty percent indicated that their hospital included both the medical and Financial Departments in purchasing decisions, while 14% and 13% reported that these decisions involve the finance department only and the individual surgeon only, respectively. Fifty-five percent reported that a mixture of both financial/economic and medical/patient information is used when purchasing devices. Fifty-one percent stated that they “always” or “very often” consider the implant cost preoperatively, compared to 18% who responded with “rarely” or “never.” Conclusions: The rise of health economics has impacted surgeon practice; however, these individuals seldom receive training in the area. Interventions that improve knowledge of costs and economic evaluations among these decision-makers must be implemented in a manner that is accessible and well understood.

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