Diagnosis-Related Groups: A system for classifying patient care by relating common characteristics such as diagnosis, treatment, and age to an expected consumption of hospital resources and length of stay. Its purpose is to provide a framework for specifying case mix and to reduce hospital costs and reimbursements and it forms the cornerstone of the prospective payment system.Prospective Payment System: A system wherein reimbursement rates are set, for a given period of time, prior to the circumstances giving rise to actual reimbursement claims.Economics, Hospital: Economic aspects related to the management and operation of a hospital.Medicare Part A: The compulsory portion of Medicare that is known as the Hospital Insurance Program. All persons 65 years and older who are entitled to benefits under the Old Age, Survivors, Disability and Health Insurance Program or railroad retirement, persons under the age of 65 who have been eligible for disability for more than two years, and insured workers (and their dependents) requiring renal dialysis or kidney transplantation are automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A.Legislation, Hospital: Laws and regulations concerning hospitals, which are proposed for enactment or enacted by a legislative body.Hospitals, Chronic Disease: Hospitals which provide care to patients with long-term illnesses.Outliers, DRG: In health care reimbursement, especially in the prospective payment system, those patients who require an unusually long hospital stay or whose stay generates unusually high costs.Reimbursement Mechanisms: Processes or methods of reimbursement for services rendered or equipment.Insurance, Health, Reimbursement: Payment by a third-party payer in a sum equal to the amount expended by a health care provider or facility for health services rendered to an insured or program beneficiary. (From Facts on File Dictionary of Health Care Management, 1988)Hospital Charges: The prices a hospital sets for its services. HOSPITAL COSTS (the direct and indirect expenses incurred by the hospital in providing the services) are one factor in the determination of hospital charges. Other factors may include, for example, profits, competition, and the necessity of recouping the costs of uncompensated care.Hospital Costs: The expenses incurred by a hospital in providing care. The hospital costs attributed to a particular patient care episode include the direct costs plus an appropriate proportion of the overhead for administration, personnel, building maintenance, equipment, etc. Hospital costs are one of the factors which determine HOSPITAL CHARGES (the price the hospital sets for its services).Length of Stay: The period of confinement of a patient to a hospital or other health facility.Medicare: Federal program, created by Public Law 89-97, Title XVIII-Health Insurance for the Aged, a 1965 amendment to the Social Security Act, that provides health insurance benefits to persons over the age of 65 and others eligible for Social Security benefits. It consists of two separate but coordinated programs: hospital insurance (MEDICARE PART A) and supplementary medical insurance (MEDICARE PART B). (Hospital Administration Terminology, AHA, 2d ed and A Discursive Dictionary of Health Care, US House of Representatives, 1976)Cost Control: The containment, regulation, or restraint of costs. Costs are said to be contained when the value of resources committed to an activity is not considered excessive. This determination is frequently subjective and dependent upon the specific geographic area of the activity being measured. (From Dictionary of Health Services Management, 2d ed)Costs and Cost Analysis: Absolute, comparative, or differential costs pertaining to services, institutions, resources, etc., or the analysis and study of these costs.United StatesHospitalization: The confinement of a patient in a hospital.GermanyCost-Benefit Analysis: A method of comparing the cost of a program with its expected benefits in dollars (or other currency). The benefit-to-cost ratio is a measure of total return expected per unit of money spent. This analysis generally excludes consideration of factors that are not measured ultimately in economic terms. Cost effectiveness compares alternative ways to achieve a specific set of results.