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Allocation of Healthcare Dollars: Analysis of Nonneonatal Circumcisions in Florida

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Circumcision remains a controversial operation. Most procedures are performed in the neonatal period and avoid general anesthesia. Legislation driven by policy statements from the American Academy of Pediatrics led to significant changes in circumcisions in Florida with a shift to nonneonatal procedures as a result of costs. We sought to study the prevalence and financial implications of nonneonatal circumcisions in Florida. A retrospective population study was performed using the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration outpatient procedure database. We queried for patients 0 to 17 years of age undergoing circumcision between 2003 and 2008. Demographics, charges, and insurance status were analyzed. From 2003 to 2008, 31,741 outpatient circumcisions were performed. Publicly funded circumcisions accounted for 17,537 charging the state $6,263 on average for each circumcision at an expense of $111.8 million for the 5-year time period analyzed. Publicly funded circumcision procedures increased more than sixfold (P < 0.0001) than those covered by private insurance. Black circumcision procedures increased 77.3 per cent, whereas white circumcisions increased 28.7 per cent. There has been a significant increase in the number of nonneonatal circumcisions performed. This has resulted in an increase in economic health care. Public funding of neonatal circumcision could result in significant cost savings and avoid potential complications of general anesthesia.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Division of Pediatric Surgery, Department of Surgery, College of Medicine, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, USA

Publication date: September 1, 2013

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