Reimbursement, utilization, and 1-year survival post-allogeneic transplantation for medicare beneficiaries with acute myeloid leukemia

Lih Wen Mau, Christa Meyer, Linda J. Burns, Wael Saber, Patricia Steinert, David J. Vanness, Jaime M. Preussler, Alicia Silver, Susan Leppke, Elizabeth A. Murphy, Ellen Denzen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background: The economics of allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (alloHCT) for older patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) affects clinical practice and public policy. To assess reimbursement, utilization, and overall survival (OS) up to 1 year post-alloHCT for Medicare beneficiaries aged 65 years or older with AML, a unique merged dataset of Medicare claims and national alloHCT registry data was analyzed. Methods: Patients diagnosed with AML undergoing alloHCT from 2010 to 2011 were included for a retrospective cohort analysis with generalized linear model adjustment. One-year post-alloHCT reimbursement included Medicare, secondary payer, and beneficiary copayments (no coinsurance) (inflation adjusted to 2017 dollars). Cost-to-charge ratios were applied to estimate department-specific inpatient costs. Cox proportional hazards regression models were utilized to identify risk factors of 1-year OS post-alloHCT. Results: A total of 250 patients met inclusion criteria. Mean total reimbursement was $230 815 (95% confidence interval [CI] = $214 381 to $247 249) 1 year after alloHCT. Pharmacy was the most-costly inpatient service category. Adjusted mean total reimbursement was statistically higher for patients who received cord blood grafts (P = .01), myeloablative conditioning (P < .0001), and alloHCT in the Northeast and West (P = .03). Mortality increased with age (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.08, 95% CI = 1.0 to 1.17), poorer Karnofsky performance score (<90% vs >90%, HR = 1.60, 95% CI = 1.08 to 2.35), and receipt of myeloablative conditioning (HR = 1.88, 95% CI = 1.21 to 2.92). Conclusions: This merged dataset allowed adjustment for a richer set of patient- and HCT-related characteristics than claims data alone. The finding that nonmyeloablative conditioning was associated with lower reimbursement and improved OS 1 year post-alloHCT warrants further investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberpkz048
JournalJNCI Cancer Spectrum
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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