Costs per case are typically composed of 3 elements: supplies, personnel and fixed overhead. In this metric, the total monetary value of supplies are tracked against an individual case (supply costs/case) or then against an individual physician (supply costs/case/physician). This metric is important on several levels. For one, it allows hospitals to see general baselines, averages, variations and outliers in supply costs, down to the physician level. This is important to better manage overall supply expenditures and even further to track margins per case. A recent survey indicated that a majority of hospital respondents are not tracking margins per case or are using out-of-date technology to do it. Next, the metric (along with total costs per case), can be used to examine clinical variation between physicians and types of procedures.

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