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Research Studies is a monthly compilation of research articles funded by AHRQ or authored by AHRQ researchers and recently published in journals or newsletters.
Results1 to 25 of 40 Research Studies Displayed
Parikh K, Perry K, Pantor C
Multidisciplinary engagement increases medications in-hand for patients hospitalized with asthma.
Asthma exacerbations in children are a leading cause of missed school days and health care use. Patients discharged from the hospital often do not fill discharge prescriptions and are at risk for future exacerbations. In this study, a multidisciplinary team aimed to increase the percentage of patients discharged from the hospital after an asthma exacerbation with their medications in-hand from 15% to 80%.
Citation: Parikh K, Perry K, Pantor C . Multidisciplinary engagement increases medications in-hand for patients hospitalized with asthma. Pediatrics 2019 Dec;144(6). doi: 10.1542/peds.2019-0674..
Keywords: Children/Adolescents, Asthma, Medication, Patient Adherence/Compliance, Teams, Hospital Discharge, Transitions of Care
Saluja S, Hochman M, Bourgoin A
Primary care: the new frontier for reducing readmissions.
To date, efforts to reduce hospital readmissions have centered largely on hospitals. In a recently published environmental scan, the investigators examined the literature focusing on primary care-based efforts to reduce readmissions. They found that multi-component care transitions programs that are initiated early in the hospitalization and are part of broader primary care practice transformation appear most promising.
Citation: Saluja S, Hochman M, Bourgoin A . Primary care: the new frontier for reducing readmissions. J Gen Intern Med 2019 Dec;34(12):2894-97. doi: 10.1007/s11606-019-05428-2.
Keywords: Primary Care, Hospital Readmissions, Hospitals, Transitions of Care, Primary Care: Models of Care, Healthcare Delivery
Kapoor A, Field T, Handler S
Characteristics of long-term care residents that predict adverse events after hospitalization.
This study examined the characteristics of long-term care (LTC) residents that predict adverse events (AEs) after discharge from recent hospitalization. This cohort study looked at AEs that occurred at 32 nursing homes from six New England states. AE incidents involving a total of 555 LTC residents with 762 transitions from the hospital back to LTC were reviewed. The association between all AEs and preventable AEs developing in the 45 days following discharge back to LTC was measured. There were 283 discharges with one or more AEs and 212 with preventable AEs. Characteristics independently associated with higher risk of AEs included hospital length of stay (LOS) 9 or more days, 18 or more regularly scheduled medications, and 19 and above on the dependency in activities of daily living (ADL) scale.
Citation: Kapoor A, Field T, Handler S . Characteristics of long-term care residents that predict adverse events after hospitalization. J Am Geriatr Soc 2020 Nov;68(11):2551-57. doi: 10.1111/jgs.16770..
Keywords: Elderly, Long-Term Care, Nursing Homes, Hospitalization, Adverse Events, Transitions of Care, Hospital Discharge, Risk
Jones CD, Falvey J, Hess E
Predicting hospital readmissions from home healthcare in Medicare beneficiaries.
The authors used patient-level clinical variables to develop and validate a parsimonious model to predict hospital readmissions from home healthcare (HHC) in Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries. They found that variables available to HHC clinicians at the first post-discharge HHC visit can predict readmission risk and inform care plans in HHC. They recommend that future analyses incorporating measures of social determinants of health, such as housing instability or social support, have the potential to enhance prediction of this outcome.
Citation: Jones CD, Falvey J, Hess E . Predicting hospital readmissions from home healthcare in Medicare beneficiaries. J Am Geriatr Soc 2019 Dec;67(12):2505-10. doi: 10.1111/jgs.16153..
Keywords: Home Healthcare, Hospital Readmissions, Medicare, Elderly, Transitions of Care
Mueller S, Zheng J, Orav EJ
Inter-hospital transfer and patient outcomes: a retrospective cohort study.
Inter-hospital transfer (IHT, the transfer of patients between hospitals) occurs regularly and exposes patients to risks of discontinuity of care, though outcomes of transferred patients remains largely understudied. The purpose of this retrospective cohort study was to evaluate the association between IHT and healthcare utilisation and clinical outcomes. The investigators concluded that IHT was associated with higher costs, longer LOS and lower odds of discharge home, but was differentially associated with odds of early death and 30 -day mortality depending on patients' disease category.
Citation: Mueller S, Zheng J, Orav EJ . Inter-hospital transfer and patient outcomes: a retrospective cohort study. BMJ Qual Saf 2019 Nov;28(11):e1. doi: 10.1136/bmjqs-2018-008087..
Keywords: Transitions of Care, Hospitals, Patient Safety, Elderly, Outcomes, Chronic Conditions, Mortality, Medicare
Klueh MP, Sloss KR, Dossett LA
Postoperative opioid prescribing is not my job: a qualitative analysis of care transitions.
This qualitative study aimed to describe transitions of care for postoperative opioid prescribing and to identify barriers and facilitators of ideal transitions for potential intervention targets. Results identified potential interventions aimed at changing physician behaviors regarding transitions of care for postoperative opioid prescribing. Implementation of these interventions could improve coordination of care for patients with persistent postoperative opioid use.
Citation: Klueh MP, Sloss KR, Dossett LA . Postoperative opioid prescribing is not my job: a qualitative analysis of care transitions. Surgery 2019 Nov;166(5):744-51. doi: 10.1016/j.surg.2019.05.033..
Keywords: Opioids, Medication, Pain, Transitions of Care, Practice Patterns
Goldstone AB, Chiu P, Baiocchi M
Interfacility transfer of Medicare beneficiaries with acute type a aortic dissection and regionalization of care in the United States.
Researchers investigated the hypothesis that regionalizing care at high-volume hospitals for acute type A aortic dissections will lower mortality. Operative mortality and long-term survival were compared for Medicare beneficiaries diagnosed with an acute type A aortic dissection who were transferred versus not transferred, underwent surgery at high-volume versus low-volume hospitals, and were rerouted versus not rerouted to a high-volume hospital for treatment. The researchers found that, despite delaying surgery, a regionalization policy that transfers patients to high-volume hospitals was associated with a 7.2% absolute risk reduction in operative mortality. They recommended that policymakers evaluate the feasibility and benefits of regionalizing the surgical treatment of acute type A aortic dissection in the United States.
Citation: Goldstone AB, Chiu P, Baiocchi M . Interfacility transfer of Medicare beneficiaries with acute type a aortic dissection and regionalization of care in the United States. Circulation 2019 Oct 8;140(15):1239-50. doi: 10.1161/circulationaha.118.038867..
Keywords: Transitions of Care, Medicare, Heart Disease and Health, Cardiovascular Conditions, Patient-Centered Outcomes Research, Risk, Evidence-Based Practice, Mortality, Hospitals
Kapoor A, Field T, Handler S
Adverse events in long-term care residents transitioning from hospital back to nursing home.
This study looked at adverse event rates of long-term care residents transitioning back to their nursing home after hospitalization. A prospective cohort study of LTC residents discharged from hospital back to LTC from March 1, 2016, to December 31, 2017 was conducted, and residents were followed up for 45 days. A random sample of 32 nursing homes located in 6 New England states was used, and 555 LTC residents were selected, contributing 762 transitions from hospital back to the same LTC facility. Most of the cohort were female (65.5%) and non-Hispanic white (93.7%). The study used trained nurse abstractors to review nursing home records to determine if an adverse event occurred. Out of 762 discharges there were 379 adverse events. The most common adverse events were pressure ulcers, skin tears, and falls followed by health care-acquired infections. 145 adverse events were considered less serious, with 28 life-threatening, and 8 were fatal. Most of the adverse events were considered preventable or ameliorable.
Citation: Kapoor A, Field T, Handler S . Adverse events in long-term care residents transitioning from hospital back to nursing home. JAMA Intern Med 2019 Sep;179(9):1254-61. doi: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.2005..
Keywords: Adverse Events, Long-Term Care, Nursing Homes, Transitions of Care, Elderly, Patient Safety, Hospital Discharge, Hospitalization
Campbell Britton M, Hodshon B, Chaudhry SI
Implementing a warm handoff between hospital and skilled nursing facility clinicians.
This study focused on increasing better communication during transfers from hospitals and skilled nursing facilities (SNFs). Warm handoffs between hospital and SNF physicians was implemented. Participation in warm handoffs gradually increased – starting at 15.78% in stage 1 and increasing to 46.89% in stage 3. A total of 2417 patient discharges were included in this study.
Citation: Campbell Britton M, Hodshon B, Chaudhry SI . Implementing a warm handoff between hospital and skilled nursing facility clinicians. J Patient Saf 2019 Sep;15(3):198-204. doi: 10.1097/pts.0000000000000529..
Keywords: Communication, Patient Safety, Hospital Discharge, Transitions of Care, Care Coordination, Hospitals, Nursing Homes
Zachrison KS, Dhand A, Schwamm LH
A network approach to stroke systems of care.
This study provided a network analysis of stroke systems of care. Stroke patients are increasing transferred between hospitals to receive higher levels of care, but coordination and triage of these patients remains a challenge. The network analysis provides an understanding of the central hubs, the change of network structure over time, and the dissemination of innovations.
Citation: Zachrison KS, Dhand A, Schwamm LH . A network approach to stroke systems of care. Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes 2019 Aug;12(8):e005526. doi: 10.1161/circoutcomes.119.005526..
Keywords: Stroke, Care Coordination, Transitions of Care, Care Management, Cardiovascular Conditions, Hospitals
Prusaczyk B, Olsen MA, Carpenter CR
Differences in transitional care provided to patients with and without dementia.
This study compared differences in transitional care provided to patients with and without dementia. The medical charts of 210 hospitalized patients at a single hospital (126 with dementia, 84 without) 70 years and older was reviewed for evidence of transitional care, including discharge planning, patient education, and follow-up appointments. Patients were dementia were less likely to receive information although caregivers would like the patients to receive more education and information from hospital providers. The authors recommend that nurses and social workers consider providing education regardless of diagnosis.
Citation: Prusaczyk B, Olsen MA, Carpenter CR . Differences in transitional care provided to patients with and without dementia. J Gerontol Nurs 2019 Aug;45(8):15-22. doi: 10.3928/00989134-20190530-02..
Keywords: Elderly, Transitions of Care, Dementia
Hussain FS, Sosa T, Ambroggio L
Emergency transfers: an important predictor of adverse outcomes in hospitalized children.
This case-control study aimed to determine the predictive validity of an emergency transfer (ET) for outcomes in a free-standing children's hospital. Controls were matched in terms of age, hospital unit, and time of year. Patients who experienced an ET had a significantly higher likelihood of in-hospital mortality (22% vs 9%), longer ICU length of stay (4.9 vs 2.2 days), and longer posttransfer length of stay (26.4 vs 14.7 days) compared with controls (P < .03 for each).
Citation: Hussain FS, Sosa T, Ambroggio L . Emergency transfers: an important predictor of adverse outcomes in hospitalized children. J Hosp Med 2019 Aug;14(8):482-85. doi: 10.12788/jhm.3219..
Keywords: Transitions of Care, Children/Adolescents, Critical Care, Intensive Care Unit (ICU), Adverse Events, Outcomes, Patient-Centered Outcomes Research, Inpatient Care, Hospitalization, Hospitals, Healthcare Delivery
Ingraham A, Wang X, Havlena J
Factors associated with the interhospital transfer of emergency general surgery patients.
Researchers used data from the Nationwide Inpatient Sample to determine patient- and hospital-level factors associated with interhospital emergency general surgery (EGS) transfers. They identified that hospital-level characteristics more strongly predicted the need for transfer than patient-related factors. They recommended considering these factors in order to facilitate transfer decision-making.
Citation: Ingraham A, Wang X, Havlena J . Factors associated with the interhospital transfer of emergency general surgery patients. J Surg Res 2019 Aug;240:191-200. doi: 10.1016/j.jss.2018.11.053..
Keywords: Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP), Emergency Department, Surgery, Decision Making, Hospitals, Healthcare Delivery, Transitions of Care
Hoonakker PLT, Wooldridge AR, Hose BZ
Information flow during pediatric trauma care transitions: things falling through the cracks.
In order to investigate information flow during pediatric trauma care transitions, researchers interviewed 18 clinicians about communication and coordination between the emergency department, operating room, and pediatric intensive care unit, then surveyed the clinicians about patient safety during these transitions. They found that, despite the fact that the many services and units involved in pediatric trauma cooperate well together during trauma cases, important patient care information is often lost when transitioning patients between units. To manage the transition of this fragile and complex population better, they recommend finding ways to manage the information flow during these transitions better by, for instance, providing technological support to ensure shared mental models.
Citation: Hoonakker PLT, Wooldridge AR, Hose BZ . Information flow during pediatric trauma care transitions: things falling through the cracks. Intern Emerg Med 2019 Aug;14(5):797-805. doi: 10.1007/s11739-019-02110-7..
Keywords: Children/Adolescents, Communication, Emergency Department, Healthcare Delivery, Intensive Care Unit (ICU), Patient Safety, Provider, Provider: Clinician, Surgery, Transitions of Care, Trauma
Dyer AP, Dodds Ashley E, Anderson DJ
Total duration of antimicrobial therapy resulting from inpatient hospitalization.
The purpose of this study was to assess the feasibility of electronic data capture of post-discharge durations and evaluate total durations of antimicrobial exposure related to inpatient hospital stays. Results showed that discharge antimicrobial therapy accounted for a large portion of antimicrobial exposure related to inpatient hospital stays and suggested that discharge prescription data can be feasibly captured through electronic prescribing records and may aid in designing stewardship interventions at transitions of care.
Citation: Dyer AP, Dodds Ashley E, Anderson DJ . Total duration of antimicrobial therapy resulting from inpatient hospitalization. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2019 Aug;40(8):847-54. doi: 10.1017/ice.2019.118..
Keywords: Antimicrobial Stewardship, Health Information Technology (HIT), Hospitalization, Patient Safety, Transitions of Care
Abara NO, Huang N, Raji MA
Effect of retail clinic use on continuity of care among Medicare beneficiaries.
Researchers examined the relationship between retail clinic use and primary care physician (PCP) continuity among Medicare enrollees in the Houston metropolitan area. They found that retail clinic use was lower in the elderly population, compared with the previously published rate in the younger populations. The lower rate of continuity of care observed among retail clinic users was an issue of concern, especially for those with chronic medical conditions.
Citation: Abara NO, Huang N, Raji MA . Effect of retail clinic use on continuity of care among Medicare beneficiaries. J Am Board Fam Med 2019 Jul-Aug;32(4):531-38. doi: 10.3122/jabfm.2019.04.180349..
Keywords: Medicare, Transitions of Care, Ambulatory Care and Surgery, Primary Care
Chase JD, Russell D, Rice M
Caregivers' perceptions managing functional needs among older adults receiving post-acute home health care.
The researchers conducted telephone interviews to explore caregivers’ experiences managing physical functioning (PF) needs of older adults in the post-acute home health care setting. Caregivers depicted the enormity of caregiving tasks needed to manage older patients' PF needs and described their perceived roles and challenges in managing PF deficits, including a sense of isolation when they were the sole caregiver. The researchers conclude that their findings can guide nursing efforts to target caregiver training and support during the critical care transition period.
Citation: Chase JD, Russell D, Rice M . Caregivers' perceptions managing functional needs among older adults receiving post-acute home health care. Res Gerontol Nurs 2019 Jul 1;12(4):174-83. doi: 10.3928/19404921-20190319-01..
Keywords: Caregiving, Elderly, Home Healthcare, Transitions of Care
AHRQ Author: Wyatt DL
Employing technology to make care transitions safer.
This commentary discusses the potential for errors in patient handoffs; important information about medications and instructions regarding patient care may be overlooked when the patient is referred to special care, moved to a new hospital setting, or discharged. The problem is especially acute for patients with multiple chronic conditions who often undergo frequent transitions to new care settings and healthcare providers. The author describes AHRQ’s funding opportunities for health information technology interventions that aim to improve communication and coordination during care transitions, such as location-based smartphone alerts, a patient-centered discharge toolkit, and a ‘smart pillbox’ electronic medication adherence reporting project.
Citation: Wyatt DL . Employing technology to make care transitions safer. J Nurs Care Qual 2019 Jul/Sep;34(3):185-88. doi: 10.1097/ncq.0000000000000417..
Keywords: Adverse Events, Care Coordination, Chronic Conditions, Communication, Health Information Technology (HIT), Healthcare Delivery, Hospital Discharge, Medical Errors, Medication, Patient Safety, Transitions of Care
Krishnan S, Hay CC, Pappadis MR
Stroke survivors' perspectives on post-acute rehabilitation options, goals, satisfaction, and transition to home.
This study analyzed stroke survivors’ perspectives on post-acute rehabilitation involvement with their care during discharge planning. Researchers interviewed eighteen stroke survivors who were sent to inpatient rehabilitation facilities after a stroke. They were surveyed about their involvement in decisions made in the selection of their rehabilitation facilities, and more than half were not. About two-thirds of patients were not involved in rehabilitation goal setting. However, most patients were satisfied with their rehabilitation stay.
AHRQ-funded; HS022134; HS024711.
Citation: Krishnan S, Hay CC, Pappadis MR . Stroke survivors' perspectives on post-acute rehabilitation options, goals, satisfaction, and transition to home. J Neurol Phys Ther 2019 Jul;43(3):160-67. doi: 10.1097/npt.0000000000000281..
Keywords: Hospital Discharge, Rehabilitation, Stroke, Transitions of Care
Fraze TK, Beidler LB, Briggs ADM
'Eyes in the home': ACOs use home visits to improve care management, identify needs, and reduce hospital use.
Researchers used national survey data from physician practices and accountable care organizations (ACOs), paired with qualitative interviews, to learn about home visiting programs. They found that interviewed ACOs reported using home visits as part of care management and care transitions programs as well as to evaluate patients' home environments and identify needs, most often using nonphysician staff. Further, home visit implementation for some types of patients can be challenging because of barriers related to reimbursement, staffing, and resources.
Citation: Fraze TK, Beidler LB, Briggs ADM . 'Eyes in the home': ACOs use home visits to improve care management, identify needs, and reduce hospital use. Health Aff 2019 Jun;38(6):1021-27. doi: 10.1377/hlthaff.2019.00003..
Keywords: Transitions of Care, Home Healthcare, Healthcare Delivery, Care Management
Parikh K, Hinds PS, Teach SJ
Using stakeholder engagement to develop a hospital-initiated, patient-centered intervention to improve hospital-to-home transitions for children with asthma.
The authors demonstrated that multidisciplinary stakeholder engagement can meaningfully influence intervention design. They presented a model of efficient yet substantive engagement of parents and health professionals in developing a hospital-to-home transition intervention for children hospitalized with asthma. Their results suggest that multidimensional stakeholder engagement can meaningfully shape intervention development, and they hope that these tools can be used or adapted to other hospital-based quality improvement, education, or research efforts.
Citation: Parikh K, Hinds PS, Teach SJ . Using stakeholder engagement to develop a hospital-initiated, patient-centered intervention to improve hospital-to-home transitions for children with asthma. Hosp Pediatr 2019 Jun;9(6):460-63. doi: 10.1542/hpeds.2018-0261.
Keywords: Children/Adolescents, Patient-Centered Healthcare, Patient and Family Engagement, Hospital Discharge, Transitions of Care, Asthma, Respiratory Conditions
Hass Z, Woodhouse M, Grabowski DC
Assessing the impact of Minnesota's return to community initiative for newly admitted nursing home residents.
This study evaluated the Minnesota Return to Community Initiative (RTCI) program which facilitates community discharge of non-Medicaid nursing home residents. It was implemented statewide without a control group. The program assists with discharge planning, transitioning to the community, and postdischarge follow-up. Results showed the program increased discharge rates by an estimated 11 percent. Success increased with time as nursing home facilities increased their participation.
Citation: Hass Z, Woodhouse M, Grabowski DC . Assessing the impact of Minnesota's return to community initiative for newly admitted nursing home residents. Health Serv Res 2019 Jun;54(3):555-63. doi: 10.1111/1475-6773.13118..
Keywords: Care Coordination, Long-Term Care, Nursing Homes, Transitions of Care
Lauerman MH, Herrera AV, Albrecht JS
Interhospital transfers with wide variability in emergency general surgery.
This study examined modern hospital practices for interhospital transfers of emergency general surgery patients. A retrospective review of the Maryland Health Services Cost Review Commission database was conducted from 2013 to 2015. The majority of patients (94.1%) were not transferred with only 3.2% transferred to a hospital and 2.7% transferred from a hospital. For individual hospitals, there was a range of 0-30.5% of encounters transferred to a hospital, 0.02-14.62% transferred from a hospital and 69.25-99.95% not transferred.
Citation: Lauerman MH, Herrera AV, Albrecht JS . Interhospital transfers with wide variability in emergency general surgery. Am Surg 2019 Jun;85(6):595-600..
Keywords: Emergency Department, Healthcare Delivery, Hospitalization, Hospitals, Outcomes, Quality of Care, Surgery, Transitions of Care
Mueller SK, Schnipper JL
Physician perspectives on interhospital transfers.
This study examined physician perspectives of the common problems that occur during acute care hospital interhospital transfers. The process tends to be nonstandardized which creates a number of issues. These issues include: patients sometimes, frequently, or always arriving without required specialized care (56% of the time), arriving with unrealistic expectations of care (77.2% of responses), arrived more than 24 hours after accepted transfer in 80.1% of responses, and arrived without necessary transfer records 86.9% of the time. The last issue and also time of day of arrival many physicians felt posed a risk to the transferred patients.
Citation: Mueller SK, Schnipper JL . Physician perspectives on interhospital transfers. J Patient Saf 2019 Jun;15(2):86-89. doi: 10.1097/pts.0000000000000312..
Keywords: Healthcare Delivery, Hospitals, Patient Safety, Provider, Provider: Physician, Transitions of Care
Fabius CD, Robison J
Differences in living arrangements among older adults transitioning into the community: examining the impact of race and choice.
The federal Money Follows the Person Rebalancing Demonstration program allows nursing home residents to use Medicaid funds for home and community-based services rather than institutional care. Race, choice in housing, and challenges faced prior to transitioning may impact living arrangements following a discharge into the community. This study examined the influence of these factors on living arrangements for 659 program participants age 65 or older.
Citation: Fabius CD, Robison J . Differences in living arrangements among older adults transitioning into the community: examining the impact of race and choice. J Appl Gerontol 2019 Apr;38(4):454-78. doi: 10.1177/0733464816687496..
Keywords: Elderly, Transitions of Care, Racial / Ethnic Minorities, Medicaid, Nursing Homes, Home Healthcare, Healthcare Delivery