Longer Initial Hospital Stays Could Cut Down on Seven-Day Readmissions from PAC Facilities

April 7, 2017 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance

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Shorter initial hospital stays may result in an increased risk of readmission to hospitals from postacute care (PAC) facilities among older or frail patients, according to a clinical investigation published in the February 2017 issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. The authors conducted a secondary analysis of 81,173 patients age 65 or older who were readmitted from a PAC facility within 30 days of initial discharge from hospitals in California, Florida, and Massachusetts. More than a quarter of the readmissions (21,399 or 26%) occurred within the first seven days. These patients tended to be older, white, living in urban areas, and having fewer comorbid illnesses. The study found a strong association between a shorter initial stay and seven-day readmission. For every additional initial day in the hospital, the likelihood of readmission decreased by 2%, the authors said.

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