May 9, 2018

Preventability of early vs late readmissions

By: Judy Mathias
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Editor’s Note

Early readmissions (within 7 days of discharge) were more likely to be preventable and amenable to hospital-based interventions, and late readmissions (8 to 30 days after discharge) were less likely to be preventable and more amenable to ambulatory and home-based interventions, this study finds.

In this study of 822 patients from 10 academic medical centers:

  • 301 (36.6%) were readmitted within 7 days after discharge
  • 521 (63.4%) were readmitted 8 to 30 days after discharge
  • 36.2% of early readmissions versus 23.0% of late readmissions were preventable.

The researchers recommend that Medicare change its readmissions penalty program time frame from 30 days to 7 days.

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