Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Heart failure patients treated by a cardiologist, rather than hospitalist, have fewer readmissions

Date:
November 6, 2012
Source:
Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation
Summary:
When a cardiologist attends to heart failure patients, even when the severity of illness is higher, patients have reduced rates of hospital readmissions, compared with those patients who are treated by a hospitalist, according to a new trial.

When a cardiologist attends to heart failure patients, even when the severity of illness is higher, patients have reduced rates of hospital readmissions, compared with those patients who are treated by a hospitalist, according to a trial being presented November 6 at the American Heart Association's scientific sessions in Los Angeles.

Congestive heart failure (CHF) is the most common cause for hospital readmission in patients over the age of 65 years. Whereas efforts to reduce readmission rates have focused on transitions of care and short-term outpatient follow-up, limited data exist on the impact on what type of specialist is attending to the patient during the admission to reduce these rates.

"Since October 1, 2012, there has been a tremendous national focus on readmission rates, because the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services began penalizing hospitals for readmissions," explained Casey M. Lawler, MD, a cardiologist at the Minneapolis Heart Institute® (MHI) at Abbott Northwestern Hospital. "However, we at the Minneapolis Heart Institute® began to establish protocols to improve our heart failure readmission rates five years ago because we were concerned about providing better patient care; which would then by design have an impact on decreasing preventable readmissions."

In their initial assessments, MHI® healthcare professionals learned that one in five patients did not understand their HF diagnosis, and less than that understood their medication regimen. "Thus, we became much more involved in post-discharge care by phone call within 24 hours of discharge, establishing provider follow-up within three to five days post discharge and having a nurse practitioner follow-up with patients identified as high risk; however, we also wanted to examine whether treatment within the walls of our facility impacted patient care and readmission rates," Lawler said.

In this study, the researchers retrospectively identified all CHF admissions between Jan. 1, 2009, and Dec. 31, 2011. They analyzed patient demographics, length of stay, time to readmission, all patient refined diagnosis related groups, hospital attending at time of discharge and total hospital costs based on the attending medical professional at the time of patient discharge.

Among 2,311 patients, 65 percent of patients were treated by a hospitalist, whereas the remaining 35 percent patients were treated by a cardiologist.

In the analysis, the researchers found that 23.2 percent of patients were readmitted within 30 days of discharge. Readmission rates were significantly lower when the attending physician was a cardiologist as compared to a hospitalist (16 vs. 27.1 percent). They also found that cardiologists were seeing more severe cases.

Median length-of-stay in the hospital was similar between attending cardiologists and hospitalists (4.8 days vs. 4.2 days). After some adjustments, Lawler and his colleagues found that the mean total costs for patients treated by a cardiologist were higher than those treated by a hospitalist ($9,850 vs. $7,741).

"Although these results reveal that specialists have a positive impact on readmission rates, an overhaul to an entire healthcare system's treatment of HF patients -- from admission to post-discharge follow-up -- is required to truly impact preventable readmissions," Lawler said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation. "Heart failure patients treated by a cardiologist, rather than hospitalist, have fewer readmissions." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 November 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121106125608.htm>.
Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation. (2012, November 6). Heart failure patients treated by a cardiologist, rather than hospitalist, have fewer readmissions. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121106125608.htm
Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation. "Heart failure patients treated by a cardiologist, rather than hospitalist, have fewer readmissions." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121106125608.htm (accessed September 30, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) — Aimed at reducing sexual assaults on college campuses, California has adopted a new law changing the standard of consent for sexual activity. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) — Researchers looked at 1,500 blood samples and determined people who developed pancreatic cancer had more branched chain amino acids. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) — Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) — Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins