New Study Questions Link Between Readmissions and Outcomes

A new study suggests that hospitals with higher Medicare readmissions rates do not necessarily produce better results for their patients.

The study, “Relationship Between Hospital Readmissions and Mortality Rates for Patients Hospitalized With Acute Myocardial Infarction, Heart Failure, or Pneumonia,” published in this month’s Journal of the American Medical Association, contradicts past research that supported the assertion of some in the medical community that hospitals that are more aggressive about readmitting patients have better long-term results in patient care.

The new study found no significant link between readmissions and mortality rates.  Some who have examined the new study, however, reject that conclusion.The study is published at a time when Medicare is being far more aggressive about penalizing hospitals financially for readmitting patients who have recently been discharged from the hospital.

Read more about the study and reaction to it in this Kaiser Health News article.  Find the study itself here, on the web site of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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