Document Type : Research Paper
Department of Health Economics, School of Health Management and Information Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
Department of Health Economics, School of Health Management and Information Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
Background and objective: The utilization of hospital beds were changed during coronavirus pandemic. A number of beds were blocked and non-Covid-19 patients have to be rejected. It led to revenue foregone and opportunity costs for hospitals as well. Assessing the opportunity cost of admitting Covid-19 patients in the first-wave peak from the hospital perspective to help policymakers for decision making or managing the budget impact was the aim of the present study.
Method: It was a cross-sectional study. The net benefit of admitting non- Covid-19 patients in comparison with Covid-19 patients was considered as opportunity costs of hospitals decision in the first-wave peak of the Covid-19 crisis (March to July 2020). So, a financial analysis was performed. A number of three Iranian hospitals based on convenience sampling were included.
Results: Admitting Covid-19 patients had US$ 57 benefits for selected hospitals while non-Covid-19 patients had US$ 69 loss for them, on average. Overall, the benefit of Covid-19 cases was higher than non-Covid-19 in the profitable hospitals, and the Covid-19 patients' losses were less than those of non-Covid-19 patients in loss-making hospitals.
Conclusion: Admitting the Covid-19 patients did not have the opportunity costs for hospitals. Responding to the stochastic demand is recommended to hospitals in crisis