Healthcare resource utilization and costs among nonvalvular atrial fibrillation patients initiating rivaroxaban or warfarin in skilled nursing facilities: a retrospective cohort study


University of Illinois at Chicago and Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center


Objective: Atrial fibrillation (AF) is present in up to 17% of patients in skilled nursing facilities (SNFs). This study compared healthcare resource utilization (HRU) and costs between AF patients initiating rivaroxaban or warfarin in SNFs.

Methods: Using de-identified claims from Optum Clinformatics Extended Data Mart (1 January 2013 to 31 December 2017), this retrospective cohort study indexed AF patients with first SNF admission during which rivaroxaban or warfarin was initiated within 3 days of admission. To adjust for selection bias, inverse probability of treatment weighting (IPTW) was applied for baseline characteristics. Logistic regression and generalized linear models were used to compare HRU and costs.

Results: 519 rivaroxaban and 1129 warfarin patients met inclusion criteria. After IPTW, the cohorts were well balanced for baseline characteristics. The average length of index SNF stay was 32.07 and 37.44 days for rivaroxaban and warfarin patients, respectively. During SNF stay, rivaroxaban patients had 27% lower odds of hospitalization (p < .0001), 2.7 fewer international normalized ratio (INR) tests per-patient-per-month (PPPM; p < .001), and 2.3 fewer pathology/laboratory encounters PPPM (p < .0001) than warfarin patients. All-cause healthcare costs were $2638 lower with rivaroxaban versus warfarin (p < .0001) during the index SNF stay, with lower medical costs (p < .0001) but higher pharmacy costs (p < .0001). Total all-cause healthcare costs 100 days post-index SNF were $8746 lower with rivaroxaban versus warfarin (p < .0001).

Conclusions: In the SNF setting, AF patients treated with rivaroxaban had 5-day shorter length of stay, lower HRU, and lower all-cause total and medical costs compared to warfarin, despite higher treatment costs. These findings may help inform clinical decision-making to reduce economic burden

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