Can a Simple Hospital Mobility Program Prevent Postdischarge Functional Decline?

June 17, 2016 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance

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​Functional decline among older patients is common after hospitalizations, but implementation of a simple hospital mobility program can significantly prevent loss of ability to perform activities of daily living one month after discharge, according to a study published on May 31, 2016 in JAMA Internal Medicine. The authors conducted one-month follow-ups with 50 patients 65 and older who were discharged from an Alabama Veterans Affairs hospital after undergoing a mobility program, and compared the results with 50 patients 65 and older who underwent usual care at the same hospital, between January 2010 and June 2011. One month after leaving the hospital, those who received usual care had a 10-point decrease compared with before they entered the hospital on the Katz Activities of Daily Living scale. Those who underwent a mobility program experienced no change.

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