Case Management

Thirty days may not be long enough to gauge readmission risk

Case Management Insider, June 16, 2015

Instead of looking at 30-day readmissions, researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) say that it would be a better quality indicator to look at readmissions in two different time periods—eight days and thirty days after discharge. The study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine bases this recommendation on a review of more than 13,000 discharges.

"Our research found that risk factors for readmission evolved during the first 30 days following hospital discharge," said lead author Kelly L. Graham, MD, MPH, a physician in the Division of General Medicine and Primary Care at BIDMC and an Instructor in Internal Medicine at Harvard Medical School (HMS) in a written release. "Readmissions in the first week were more highly associated with factors related to the initial hospitalization than later readmissions. These findings suggest that the standard 30-day metric does not accurately reflect hospitals' accountability for readmissions."
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