Case Management

Virtual patient advocate could reduce readmissions

Case Management Monthly, July 1, 2009

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The spotlight’s shining on readmission rates. A Commonwealth Fund–supported study published in the April New England Journal of Medicine found that one-fifth of Medicare beneficiaries return to the hospital within 30 days of discharge and one-third return within 90 days. The study stated that unplanned readmissions cost Medicare $17.4 billion in 2004.

Experts say this research points to the need for better patient education before discharge. That’s why researchers at Boston Medical Center (BMC) are investigating whether a virtual patient advocate can improve patient education and reduce readmissions.

 

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