Estimating the cost of Emergency Department presentations in NSW. CHERE Working Paper 2014/01

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This brief methods paper explains how to use the NSW Government Health Costs of Care Standards to estimate the cost of presentations to emergency departments (ED) in NSW. We begin with a discussion of the allocation of presentations according to visit type, triage category and mode of separation to urgency disposition group (UDG) class for the purpose of allocating cost weights and how to apply these weights to estimate the cost per presentation. The discussion is then extended to incorporate a suggested approach for estimating ED costs when mode of separation is known but visit type and triage category are unknown; we do this by using the distribution of current NSW ED presentations by visit type, triage category and mode of separation to calculate the average cost for each mode of separation.
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