The Journal of Arthroplasty, Volume 35, Issue 4, 918 - 925.e7

The Effects of Bundled Payment Programs for Hip and Knee Arthroplasty on Patient-Reported Outcomes

Finch, Daniel J.Browne, James A. et al.
Hip Knee

Background

Patient-reported outcomes are essential to demonstrate the value of hip and knee arthroplasty, a common target for payment reforms. We compare patient-reported global and condition-specific outcomes after hip and knee arthroplasty based on hospital participation in Medicare’s bundled payment programs.

Methods

We performed a prospective observational study using the Comparative Effectiveness of Pulmonary Embolism Prevention after Hip and Knee Replacement trial. Differences in patient-reported outcomes through 6 months were compared between bundle and nonbundle hospitals using mixed-effects regression, controlling for baseline patient characteristics. Outcomes were the brief Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcomes Score or the brief Hip Disability and Osteoarthritis Outcomes Score, the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System Physical Health Score, and the Numeric Pain Rating Scale, measures of joint function, overall health, and pain, respectively.

Results

Relative to nonbundled hospitals, arthroplasty patients at bundled hospitals had slightly lower improvement in Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcomes Score (−1.8 point relative difference at 6 months; 95% confidence interval −3.2 to −0.4; P = .011) and Hip Disability and Osteoarthritis Outcomes Score (−2.3 point relative difference at 6 months; 95% confidence interval −4.0 to −0.5; P = .010). However, these effects were small, and the proportions of patients who achieved a minimum clinically important difference were similar. Preoperative to postoperative change in the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System Physical Health Score and Numeric Pain Rating Scale demonstrated a similar pattern of slightly worse outcomes at bundled hospitals with similar rates of achieving a minimum clinically important difference.

Conclusions

Patients receiving care at hospitals participating in Medicare’s bundled payment programs do not have meaningfully worse improvements in patient-reported measures of function, health, or pain after hip or knee arthroplasty.

Download article