Few things are as important to hospital operations as its case mix, the relative medical complexity and care demands of a facility’s patient base expressed numerically. The case mix determines CMS reimbursement for many patient episodes and serves as a general indicator of the resources hospitals must spend to manage the medical needs of the surrounding population. The higher the case mix, the greater the resources a hospital needs to successfully treat its patients. The following list identifies the top 20 general-purpose acute care hospitals with the highest and lowest case mixes according to Definitive Healthcare data.

The top 20 hospitals with the highest case mixes tend to be larger facilities located near major population centers. Larger hospitals tend to provide a wide array of services and are better suited to handle complex or serious cases referred to them from tertiary centers, raising their case mix. However, there are a few exceptions. Medical Center at Elizabeth place only has 26 beds, but still offers enough variety in services to be considered an acute-care hospital, as opposed to specialty or surgical hospitals, which were omitted from the list and generally have very high case mixes. Many of the hospitals listed are also academic medical centers, such as Keck Medical Center of USC, University of Washington Medical Center, and University of Maryland Medical Center, which often treat higher-acuity patients.

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