One-year treatment costs of trauma care in the USA

Sharada Weir, David S. Salkever, Frederick P. Rivara, Gregory J. Jurkovich, Avery B. Nathens, Ellen J. MacKenzie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Although injuries are a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the USA, few prior studies exist on the costs of trauma care. This article estimates treatment costs of care for 12 months following injury. Primary and secondary data were collected on over 5000 moderate-to-severely injured patients 18-84 years of age discharged from 69 US hospitals. Acute and post-acute costs of care were estimated from a combination of data sources: UB92 hospital bills, patient surveys, medical record abstracts, and where available, Medicare claims. Key analysis variables were demographic characteristics, insurance status and nature and severity of injury. Mean 1-year cost per patient of trauma care in our population was $75,210. On average, 58% of cost was accounted for by the index hospitalization. Total 1-year treatment cost of adult major trauma in the USA was conservatively estimated to be US$27 billion annually (2005).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-197
Number of pages11
JournalExpert Review of Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2010


  • Cost of illness
  • Elders
  • Insurance status
  • Trauma care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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