Women admitted to hospitals more often than men

Women accounted for 59 percent of hospital admissions in 2007, according to an analysis by the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

One in five hospitals stays for women was connected with pregnancy. And even when those 5 million hospitalizations were excluded, women still accounted for 2 million more impatient stays in 2007 than men – 18.2 million for females and 16.2 million stays for males. Overall, women represented 23.2 million of the 39.4 million hospital admissions in 2007, AHRQ found.

In Philadelphia and its four Pennsylvania suburban counties, women accounted for 398,230 of 707,600 hospital discharges in 2007, or 56 percent of the inpatient visits, according to an Inquirer analysis of billing data. In New Jersey women accounted for nearly 58 percent of the 1.1 million hospitalizations in 2007.

The AHRQ report says that after childbirth and other pregnancy related issues, cardiovascular disease was the leading cause women were admitted to hospitals; conditions such as heart disease, heart failure and heart attacks led to nearly 2 million admissions in 2007.

AHRQ found that the other top causes that sent women to hospitals in 2007 were:

Pneumonia                                            608,000 admissions
Osteoarthritis                                        498,000 admissions
Depression and bipolar disorder            442,000 admissions
Urinary tract infection                            383,000 admissions
Blood infection (septicemia)                  354,000 admissions