Program Intended to Reduce Readmissions May be Linked to Increased Mortality Rates in Patients with Heart Failure

November 22, 2017 | Strategic Insights for Health System


​Although the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program (HRRP) of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) may have helped lower the rate of 30-day and one-year readmissions for patients discharged after heart failure hospitalizations, it may also be linked to an increase in 30-day and one-year mortality rates for this population, according to a study published in the November 12, 2017, issue of JAMA Cardiology. HRRP, which went into effect in April 2010, involves public reporting of hospital 30-day readmission rates for heart failure and other conditions. HRRP went into effect in April 2010, and began with a penalty-free implementation phase; however, beginning in October 2012, hospitals with higher readmission rates faced financial penalties. Since then, excessive readmission rates have been the dominant driver of penalties in the HRRP.

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