Navigation Links
Hospitals Falling Short on Heart Patients' Follow-Up Care
Date:5/4/2010

Not tracking heart failure outcomes after discharge leads to readmissions, study finds

TUESDAY, May 4 (HealthDay News) -- A quick follow-up visit by a medical professional to a heart failure patient discharged from the hospital reduces the chance that the patient will wind up back in the hospital, but that preventive measure is more often ignored than observed, a new study finds.

The study of more than 30,000 hospital patients covered by Medicare found that fewer than 40 percent of those with heart failure saw a health-care provider within seven days of discharge, according to a report in the May 5 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The readmission rate was 15 percent lower for those who did have such a visit, the study found.

A high rate of readmission is a problem for all patients, said study author Dr. Adrian F. Hernandez, an assistant professor of medicine at Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, N.C. The Duke Clinical Research Institute group he led chose to look at heart failure -- loss of the ability to pump blood -- because it is "a large part of the problem." People with heart failure generally are older and have other health problems, such as diabetes and arthritis.

Medicare data published in 2009 showed that heart failure is the leading diagnosis for hospital readmission.

Money is a major factor in the readmission issue. "There is currently no direct incentive" for a hospital to report the rate of readmissions, Hernandez said, but the newly enacted health care law calls for a reduction in Medicare payments to hospitals with high readmission rates for heart failure patients, starting in October 2012.

The new study provides support for that measure, Hernandez said.

One question is whether the responsibility for follow-up visits after discharge lies with the hospital or the physician, said Dr. Robert O. Bonow, chief of the division of cardiology at the Northwestern University School of Medicine and a spokesman for the American Heart Association.

"The hospitals argue, why is it their bother?" Bonow said. "They take care of the patients in the hospitals and then hand them off."

The new study "puts the issue more in the hospitals' court," Bonow said. "It argues for the creation of some sort of system leading to patients getting appointments with doctors."

But it needn't be a doctor who schedules the follow-up visit, Bonow said. He acknowledged that he usually is too busy to make that visit. "What we do here many times is to have a visiting nurse go home with the patient," Bonow said. "A visiting nurse seeing the patient may be as effective as seeing a doctor."

Hospitals should also have "a safety net" that would schedule a visit to a discharged patient if one is not done soon after the hospital stay, Hernandez said.

And people who are leaving the hospital should be sure to ask whether an appointment has been made for a visit by a health-care provider, he said.

The study did find reduced mortality in cases where follow-up visits were done after hospital discharge, Hernandez said. The rate was lower when the visit was made by a cardiologist, but the number of visits was small, "so it is difficult to interpret," he said.

More information

To learn about heart failure, visit the American Heart Association.



SOURCES: Adrian F. Hernandez, M.D., assistant professor, medicine, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, N.C.; Robert O. Bonow, chief, division of cardiology, and Goldberg Distinguished Professor, Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago; May 5, 2010, Journal of the American Medical Association


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Is patient coding making hospitals appear better than they are?
2. U.S. Hospitals Get Low Marks on Curbing Infections
3. Primary care physicians nationwide face clinical ethical conflicts with religious hospitals
4. Thomson Reuters Names QHR Management Client to 100 Top Hospitals List - Wooster Community Hospital Honored for Third Consecutive Year
5. Prescription Drug Abuse Sending More to Hospitals
6. Health Reform For Doctors And Hospitals: Obama Made An Offer We Can't Refuse! - ERISAclaim.com Celebrates its Successful Webinars on Reimbursement Laws
7. New PerfectServe Clinician-to-Clinician Communications System Gives Physicians Control and Helps Hospitals Coordinate Care
8. Fewer Deaths in Larger, Busier Hospitals
9. Holy Cross And Mercy Hospitals Announce Staff Promotions
10. Carefx Portal Solution to Deliver First Time, Statewide Access to Patient Data Among Hospitals in the LSU Network
11. New superbug surpasses MRSA infection rates in community hospitals
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 13, 2017 , ... “America On The Brink”: the Christian history of the ... is the creation of published author, William Nowers. Captain Nowers and his wife, ... he spent thirty years in the Navy. Following his career as a naval ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... products to meet the demand of today’s consumer and regulatory authorities worldwide. From ... probiotic experts and tested to meet the highest standard. , These products ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... system that we intend to develop to enable prevention of a major side ... severe hearing loss, especially in pediatric patients. For cisplatin, hearing loss is FDA ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... On Saturday, October 21, the ... – Miles by Moonlight to raise money for the American Heart Association Heart Walk. ... , Teams will work together to keep their treadmills moving for 5 hours. Treadmills ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... wound care advancements to physician colleagues, skilled nursing facility medical directors and other ... Treacherous Waters of Wound Care." , "At many of these conferences we get ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/25/2017)... , Sept. 25, 2017  EpiVax, Inc., a ... design, and immune-engineering today announced the launch of ... development of personalized therapeutic cancer vaccines. EpiVax has ... exclusive access to enabling technologies to the new ... will lead EpiVax Oncology as Chief Executive Officer. ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... 22, 2017 AVACEN Medical (AVACEN) announced that ... successfully helping those with the widespread pain associated with ... Amanda in Essex, England commented, ... hair, experiencing no sleep at all, tremendous pain, with ... cannot recommend [the AVACEN 100] enough, how this has ...
(Date:9/18/2017)... , Pa. and KALAMAZOO, Mich. , ... Allentown, Penn. , and OptiMed Specialty Pharmacy of ... business partnership to offer a strategic hub service that ... Healthcare,s highly sought-after personal spirometer, Spiro PD 2.0, and ... A spirometer is a medical device used to ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: