Monday, July 1, 2013

Tips for Patients to Help Prevent Readmissions

In a recent piece for USA Weekend, RWJF President and CEO Risa Lavizzo-Mourey provides tips on how patients can help prevent hospital readmissions:
  • Ask and repeat. 
  • Have a discharge plan. 
  • Know your meds. 
  • Keep appointments. 
  • Spot warning signs. 
We'd like to add one more: talk to a nurse before you leave the hospital.

INQRI researchers at Marquette University, led by Marianne Weiss and Olga Yakusheva, studied what hospital-based nurses do to influence outcomes after a patient is discharged from a hospital. Specifically, they identified the contributions that nursing staff make to the quality of discharge teaching and the impact of that teaching on patient outcomes, readiness and readmission rates of patients who are discharged home. They found that when units had more RN hours per patient day, fewer overtime hours and fewer vacancies, the discharge teaching was of higher quality, patients reported greater readiness for hospital discharge, and post-discharge utilization of readmission and emergency room visits was lower.

Click here to access the team's recent journal articles.

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