Many injury-related hospital stays among elderly result in readmission

From AHRQ:

A new AHRQ-funded study finds that about one in seven elderly patients (14 percent) admitted to the hospital for an injury will be readmitted within 30 days.  The study examined 2006 data from hospitals in 11 states for admissions with a principal diagnosis of injury using AHRQ’s Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project State inpatient databases. The most common reasons for readmission were surgery of the upper or lower extremities, pneumonia, heart failure, septicemia and urinary tract infection. Three quarters of injury patients were discharged to nursing homes or home health care. Patients who had severe injuries, received transfusions, experienced a patient safety indicator event,  had an infection, and were discharged to a nursing home or home helath care had higher readmission rates. The study’s authors suggest that strategies to reduce readmission rates among elderly injury patients should focus on preventing complications and infections during the hospital stay and also address nursing home and home health care. The report, “Thirty-Day, All-Cause Readmissions for Elderly Patients Who Have an Injury-related Inpatient Stay,” was published in the October issue of Medical Care. [PubMed]

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