The Sg2 Forecast reveals that the case mix index—a measure reflecting the diversity, complexity and severity of patient illnesses—is up 5% since 2019, the year before the pandemic. At the same time, the average length of stay for patients admitted to a hospital has risen 10%, driven by the increasingly complex nature of the patient population.
These changes are further exacerbating hospital workforce challenges. Staffing shortages in hospitals and high patient acuity—challenges that Sg2 expects will continue into the next decade—along with a shortage of hospital beds will result in more surgeries being performed in ASCs.
TRENDS DRIVING ASC GROWTH
The Forecast projects that pharmaceutical and technological challenges will continue into the next decade. However, during this same timeframe, pharmaceutical and technological advancements will also drive healthcare delivery, including bariatric surgery, to outpatient status and outpatient facilities.
“Provider organizations also face mounting pressure to redesign care delivery models as pharmaceutical and technological advancements impact procedure types and locations,” according to a news release from Vizient. For example, the Forecast projects nearly 12,000 fewer bariatric surgeries by 2033, representing a 4% decline, because of anti-obesity pharmaceuticals entering the market.
According to the Forecast, outpatient infusion therapy will grow for several service lines. Growth rates include:
- 48% for rheumatology
- 37% for gastroenterology
- 23% for endocrine
- 18% for dermatology