Improved staffing cuts medicare patient readmissions

Improved staffing cuts medicare patient readmissions
Hospital nurses with good work environments who are caring for fewer patients have significantly fewer elderly Medicare patients with heart failure, acute myocardial infarction, and pneumonia who are readmitted to the hospital within the first 30 days, according to research published in the January issue of Medical Care.

(HealthDay)—Hospital nurses with good work environments who are caring for fewer patients have significantly fewer elderly Medicare patients with heart failure, acute myocardial infarction (MI), and pneumonia who are readmitted to the hospital within the first 30 days, according to research published in the January issue of Medical Care.

Matthew D. McHugh, Ph.D., J.D., M.P.H., R.N., and Chenjuan Ma, Ph.D., R.N., of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, studied the relationship between the work environment, education, and staffing level of hospital nurses and 30-day readmissions for Medicare , acute MI, and pneumonia.

The researchers found that, overall, 23.3 percent of heart failure, 19.1 percent of MI, and 17.8 percent of pneumonia cases in were readmitted to the hospital within 30 days. The risk of readmission for these conditions was between 6 and 9 percent higher for each additional patient assigned to a hospital nurse. Additionally, patients cared for by hospital nurses working in a good work environment had a significantly lower risk of readmission for heart failure (7 percent lower), MI (6 percent lower), and pneumonia (10 percent lower).

"Our results suggest that improving nurses' work environment and reducing nurses' workload are organization-wide reforms that could result in fewer readmissions for with common medical conditions," the authors write. "This is consistent with the evidence showing significant associations between the nurse work environment, staffing, and other patient outcomes."

More information: href="http://journals.lww.com/lww-medicalcare/Abstract/2013/01000/Hospital_Nursing_and_30_Day_Readmissions_Among.11.aspx" target="_new">Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Patient-centered medical homes reduce costs

8 hours ago

The patient-centered medical home (PCMH), introduced in 2007, is a model of health care that emphasizes personal relationships, team delivery of care, coordination across specialties and care settings, quality ...

New mums still excessively sleepy after four months

9 hours ago

(Medical Xpress)—New mums are being urged to be cautious about returning to work too quickly, after a QUT study found one in two were still excessively sleepy four months after giving birth.

It's time to address the health of men around the world

10 hours ago

All over the world, men die younger than women and do worse on a host of health indicators, yet policy makers rarely focus on this "men's health gap" or adopt programs aimed at addressing it, according to an international ...

User comments