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'Social environmental factors' affect rehospitalization risk in home healthcare patients
Date:11/12/2012

Philadelphia, Pa. (November 12, 2012) For elderly patients receiving home healthcare after a hospital stay, "social environmental factors"particularly care provided by a family member or other informal caregiverhave a significant impact on the risk of repeated hospital admissions, reports a study in the October-December issue of Advances in Nursing Science. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part ofWolters Kluwer Health.

"Understanding how social environmental factors contribute to home healthcare patients being rehospitalized would be assist in improving care for patients and in helping agencies deliver more cost-effective care while at the same time managing Medicare spending," according to the report by Hong Tao, RN, PhD, of University of Wisconsin Milwaukee and colleagues.

Social Environmental Factors Affect Functional Abilities

The study looked at factors affecting the risk of repeated hospital admissions among 1,268 elderly patients receiving home healthcare. Using data from routine, Medicare-required assessments, the researchers focused on the importance of social environmental factors: such as whether the patient lived alone or with others, whether he or she had a primary informal caregiver, and the type and frequency of informal care provided.

Overall, nearly 21 percent of patients in the study were rehospitalized, most within the first 20 days of being discharged from the hospital to home healthcare. Rehospitalizationsdefined as readmission to the hospital within 60 days after being released from the hospital to home careare an important indicator of the quality of care.

The study found some significant associations between social environmental factors, and suggested some pathways by which these eff
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Contact: Connie Hughes
Connie.Hughes@wolterskluwer.com
646-674-6348
Wolters Kluwer Health
Source:Eurekalert

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