Health Services Utilization


Females represented 60.1 percent of the over 34 million short-stay hospital discharges in 2003. Nearly 20 percent of discharges for all females were due to childbirth, while 15 percent were due to diseases of the circulatory system. Other common reasons for hospitalization included diseases of the respiratory, digestive, and genitourinary systems, injury and poisoning, and mental disorders.

Overall, females had a higher hospital discharge rate than males (1,792.2 versus 1,228.3 per 10,000 population). Males and females have different rates of discharge for every type of proceudre performed. Several of the procedures for which females had a higher discharge rate than males included operations on the digestive system (224.7 versus 170.4 per 10,000) and operations on the genital organs (139.0 versus 17.5 per 10,000). Males had a higher discharge rate than females for operations on the cardiovascular system (276.7 versus 196.0 per 10,000) and a slightly higher rate of operations on the musculoskeletal system (129.5 versus 128.7 per 10,000). Among females, the highest rate of discharges was due to obstetrical procedures (453.2 per 10,000).

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Women's Health USA 2006 is not copyrighted. Readers are free to duplicate and use all or part of the information contained on this page. Suggested Citation: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, Women's Health USA 2006. Rockville, Maryland: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2006.