The Neonatal Costs of Maternal Cocaine Use: Harlem
Investigators compared 355 cocaine-exposed infants born in a large, publicly funded inner-city hospital with a random sample of 199 non-exposed infants born in the same hospital to examine the added neonatal cost and length of hospital stay associated with fetal cocaine exposure. Between September 1, 1985 and August 31, 1986, all newborn infants were screened by urine test for illicit substances, and medical records were reviewed for maternal histories of substance abuse. The cocaine-exposed group consisted of all single live births who were identified by either maternal history or infant urine assay. The control group was comprised of single live births for whom no drug use history was indicated by either maternal history or infant urine test. Investigators assessed a total of 129 variables across 554 cases. Outcome measures included the cost and length of stay for each infant until medically cleared for hospital discharge, as well as the cost and length of stay for each infant until actual discharge from the hospital.