Research Article

What is the Cost of Measuring a Blood Pressure?

Steven A Yarows*

Published: 11 October, 2018 | Volume 2 - Issue 1 | Pages: 059-066

Rationale: Blood Pressure measurement has transitioned to the oscillometric method in most hospitals in the United States, however out-patient offices mainly use the auscultatory technique.

Objective: To determine time taken to measure blood pressure by an automatic oscillometric device compared to an auscultatory measurement device and to determine what each measurement costs.

Methods: Blood Pressures were measured in a single primary care office by medical assistants (MA) for patients seen for office visits. Timed measurements were performed using an automated oscillometric Welch Allyn Connex Vital Signs Monitor (WA) and manually using a Tycos device. A minimum of 400 readings were taken with each method.

Results: The average time to manually measure BP was 58.6 seconds, whereas the WA average was 39.8 seconds, 18.8 seconds faster (p<0.05). There was an improvement in measurement time with MA experience with the WA device (p<0.05). The average MA cost to measure a single BP using the manual method was $0.35 vs. the WA method ($0.24) or a savings of $0.11 per measurement. The improvement with experience of WA method reduced cost to $0.17 per measurement.

Conclusion: The oscillometric method saved 17cents per measurement potentially saving $1,119 per year for our primary care practice.

Read Full Article HTML DOI: 10.29328/journal.ach.1001012 Cite this Article Read Full Article PDF


Blood pressure; Methods/determination; Physicians’ offices; Primary health care; Automation; Cost of blood pressure; Efficiency/cost reductio; Medical devices


  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Ambulatory Care Use and Physician office visits. 2017; Ref.: https://goo.gl/MS6c7Z .
  2. Myers MG, Godwin M, Dawes M, Kiss A, Tobe SW, Kaczorowski J. Measurement of Blood Pressure in the Office: Recognizing the Problem and Proposing the Solution. Hypertension. 2010; 55: 195-200. Ref.: https://goo.gl/3JdzAT
  3. SPRINT Research Group, Wright JT Jr, Williamson JD, Whelton PK, Snyder JK, et al. A Randomized Trial of Intensive versus Standard Blood-Pressure Control. N Engl J Med. 2015; 373: 2103-2116. Ref.: https://goo.gl/577UR4
  4. Pickering TG, Hall JE, Appel LJ, Falkner BE, Graves J, et al. Recommendations for Blood Pressure Measurement in Humans and Experimental Animals, Part 1: Blood Pressure Measurement in Humans: A Statement for Professionals from the Subcommittee of Professional and Public Education of the American Heart Association Council on High Blood Pressure Research. Circulation. 2004 111: 697-716. Ref.: https://goo.gl/o81j3Y


Figure 1

Figure 1

Figure 1

Figure 2

Figure 1

Figure 3

Figure 1

Figure 4

Similar Articles

Recently Viewed

Read More

Most Viewed

Read More