Mar 25, 2021

By Jane Brown

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Hospital treatment for COVID-19 infections does not come cheap.

Data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information shows COVID-19-related hospitalizations in Canada cost $23,000 per stay, which is about four times as much as the average.

A just released report from CIHI also says the average length of stay for a COVID-related hospitalization in Canada was two weeks.

In data studied from January to November of 2020, the estimated total cost of COVID-19-related hospitalizations in Canada was more than $317-million.

There were nearly 14,000 hospital stays for patients with a diagnosis of COVID-19 in Canada between last January and November, along with more than 85,400 emergency department visits for COVID-19.

Of the 13,906 COVID-related hospitalizations analyzed, CIHI found that 57.1 per cent were discharged home while 18.7 per cent (2,605) died in hospital.

Another 14.2 per cent were transferred to another in-patient care facility.

Nearly 55 per cent of those requiring hospitalization were men and the median age was 67. Men also made up a higher percentage of ICU admission (64.1).

CIHI data showed 47 per cent of those requiring ICU admission were 65 or over, while the median age was 63. The average length of stay in an ICU was 20.8 days.

More than 60 per cent (60.2) of ICU patients needed ventilation. Thirty per cent died in hospital while 43.3 were discharged.

CIHI also found that 30.2 per cent of all COVID-19 hospitalizations came from Canada’s lowest income neighbourhoods, compared with 12.1 per cent from the highest income areas.

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