Objectives: This report presents 2005 national estimates and selected trend data on the use of nonfederal short-stay hospitals in the United States. Estimates are provided by selected patient and hospital characteristics, diagnoses, and surgical and nonsurgical procedures performed. Estimates of diagnoses and procedures are presented according to International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification codes.
Methods: The estimates are based on data collected through the National Hospital Discharge Survey. The survey has been conducted annually since 1965. In 2005, data were collected for approximately 375,000 discharges. Of the 473 eligible nonfederal short-stay hospitals in the sample, 444 (94 percent) responded to the survey.
Results: An estimated 34.7 million discharges from nonfederal short-stay hospitals occurred in 2005. Discharges used 165.9 million days of care and had an average length of stay of 4.8 days. Persons 65 years and over accounted for 38 percent of the hospital discharges and 44 percent of the days of care. The proportion of discharges whose status was described as routine discharge or discharged to the patient's home declined with age, from 91 percent for inpatients under 45 years of age to 41 percent for those 85 years and over. Hospitalization for malignant neoplasms decreased from 1990-2005. The hospitalization rate for asthma was the highest for children under 15 years of age and those 65 years of age and over. The rate was lowest for those 15-44 years of age. Thirty-eight percent of hospital discharges had no procedures performed, whereas 12 percent had four or more procedures performed. An episiotomy was performed during a majority of vaginal deliveries in 1980 (64 percent), but by 2005, it was performed during less than one of every five vaginal deliveries (19 percent).