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Predicting psychiatric inpatient costs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-308
Number of pages6
JournalSocial Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology
Issue number2
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 Dec 2015


King's Authors


Purpose: A large proportion of mental health costs is inpatient care but little is known about their variation between patients. The aim of this study was to measure and identify the predictors of costs of staff contacts and activities on inpatient wards. Method: Inpatients from psychiatric hospital wards in south London were interviewed in 2008 and 2009 and staff contacts and use of activities recorded over a week and costs calculated. Regression analyses identified predictors. Results: Of 334 participants, 78 % used activities and 90 % had staff contacts. However, 41 % reported no nurse contact. Mean staff contact and activity costs were £197 and £30 per week, respectively. Staff contact costs were inversely related to age, and activity costs were higher for patients with higher levels of education. Patient satisfaction was positively associated with both costs. Conclusions: The costs of self-reported staff contacts and use of activities account for a small amount of total inpatient costs. Patients with higher costs appeared to have higher levels of satisfaction.

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