Cost variation and revisit rate for adult patients with asthma presenting to the emergency department

Martin F. Casey, Lynne D. Richardson, Michael Weinstock, Michelle P. Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Background: Asthma is common, resulting in 53 million emergency department (ED) visits annually. Little is known about variation in cost and quality of ED asthma care. Study objective: We sought to describe variation in costs and 7-day ED revisit rates for asthma care across EDs. Our primary objective was to test for an association between ED costs and the likelihood of a 7-day revisit for another asthma exacerbation. Methods: We used the 2014 Florida State Emergency Department Database to perform an observational study of ED visits by patients ≥18 years old with a primary diagnosis of asthma that were discharged home. We compared patient and hospital characteristics of index ED discharges with and without 7-day revisits, then tested the association between ED revisits and index ED costs. Multilevel regression was performed to account for hospital-level clustering. Results: In 2014, there were 54,060 adult ED visits for asthma resulting in discharge, and 1667 (3%) were associated with an asthma-related ED revisit within 7 days. Median cost for an episode of ED asthma care was $597 with an interquartile range of $371–980. After adjusting for both patient and hospital characteristics, lack of insurance was associated with higher odds of revisit (OR 1.42, 95% CI 1.18–1.71), while private insurance, female gender, and older age were associated with lower odds of revisit. Hospital costs were not associated with ED revisits (OR = 1.00; 95% CI 1.00–1.00). Conclusion: Hospital costs associated with ED asthma visits vary but are not associated with odds of ED revisit.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-183
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Emergency Medicine
StatePublished - Nov 2022


  • Asthma
  • Cost variation
  • ED revisits
  • Emergency medicine
  • Health services research


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