Some hospitals spending twice per patient compared to others

SOME Australian hospitals are spending twice as much as others to treat patients, the National Health Performance Authority report says.

It shows some hospitals spend up to $6100 for patients requiring acute care, while others spend as little as $3100 on similar patients.

The major metropolitan public hospitals with the lowest costs in the 2013-14 financial year were all in Victoria - Frankston Hospital, Casey Hospital, Western Hospital and Dandenong Campus Hospital.

In the same period the major metropolitan public hospitals with the highest costs were located in the ACT and Western Australia.

The report is the first in Australia to show change in an individual hospital's efficiency. It found that from 2011-12 to 2013-14, eight major metropolitan public hospitals decreased their costs per "notional average" service by at least 5%, indicating improved efficiency.

But six increased their costs by at least 10%, indicating decreased efficiency. Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital in New South Wales had the largest increase at 17%.

The report makes no determination that a hospital with a higher or lower cost or increased or decreased efficiency delivers better or worse care.