Korean J Clin Pharm.  2018 Mar;28(1):57-64. 10.24304/kjcp.2018.28.1.57.

Analysis of Medical Use and Costs of Liver Transplant Patients Using National Patients Sample Data

  • 1College of Pharmacy, Sahmyook University, Seoul 01795, Republic of Korea. kimhye-lin@syu.ac.kr


Patients experience significant differences in aspects of mortality, quality of life, and costs between during the year of receiving liver transplant (LT) and the subsequent years (post-LT). This study aimed to estimate the medical utilization and cost of LT for patients compared to post-LT patients by using a recent National Patient Sample (NPS) data provided by the Korean Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service (HIRA).
This study used a subset of the 2015 HIRA-NPS. Patient claims data that included Z944 (Korean Standard Classification of Diseases code for LT status) were selected. Within the selected data, LT patients were identified based on whether the national health insurance number code of Q80 (procedure code for LT surgery) was included, and they were compared to post-LT patients.
In the analysis, 330 patients were included. The average cost per patient was 90,066±36,959 thousand KRW and 10,557±9,668 thousand KRW for LT and post-LT patients, respectively. Especially, LT patients' costs for injection/procedure, surgery/treatment, and examination were higher than other costs, being 35,983±18,115 thousand KRW, 28,246±9,408 thousand KRW, and 12,131±6,604 thousand KRW, respectively. For inpatients, the average number of hospitalized days was 63.5±66.0 days for LT patients and 22.3±35.1 days for post-LT patients.
Compared to post-LT patients, LT patients had higher costs, especially for injection/procedure, surgery/treatment, and examination. Additionally, the LT group had longer hospitalization duration and higher costs for their hospital admission, whereas they did not show a significant difference in number of visits and medical costs for outpatient-care.


Liver transplantation; medical cost; medical utilization
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