chapter  5
Healthcare Resource Groups and general practitioner purchasing
Pages 11

Healthcare Resource Groups (HRGs) can be used as the purchasing currency to effect service agreements with defined casemix and at a clinical level to inform clinical practice, in primary and secondary care. Fundholders' contracts have tended to be based on cost and volume, or cost per case and a crude casemix currency based on banded costing have developed. Although HRGs are primarily designed to provide groups of treatments which are of similar cost, they can also be used to increase understanding of comparative quality of care and outcome. Although some of the patients were appropriately in hospital for longer than 47 days, a dialogue was set up and enabled change in the organization of discharge arrangements. Within the Berkshire Integrated Purchasing Project, one of the objectives was to examine the rise in emergency admissions. Analysing the data using HRGs gave the project a better overall picture of which conditions were the most common and the level of resource used.