Case Management

Tip: Factors to consider before admitting a patient

Case Management Weekly, February 3, 2010

The decision to admit a patient is a complex medical judgment that can be made only after the physician has considered a number of factors including the patient’s medical history and current medical needs.

Consider the following when deciding whether to admit a patient:

  • The patient’s medical history and the severity of the signs and symptoms that affect the patient’s medical needs
  • Medical predictability of something adverse happening to the patient
  • Need for diagnostic studies that appropriately are outpatient services (i.e., their performance does not ordinarily require the patient to remain at the hospital for 24 hours or more) to assist in assessing whether that patient should be admitted
  • Availability of diagnostic procedures at the same time when and at the location where the patient presents 

This week’s tip was adapted from Observation Status: A Guide to Compliant Level of Care Determinations published by HCPro, Inc. For more information on this book or to order your copy, visit the HCMarketplace.

Do you have a question about a case management topic? Send it to editor Ben Amirault at An answer to your question might appear in a future issue of Case Management Weekly.

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