In this single institution case-control study, researchers found that none of the discharge processes studied had any effect on 30 day readmission rates, including discharge summary completion / content, discharge instruction completion / content, medication reconciliation, presence of caretaker for discharge instructions, and arranged follow up. Although disappointing that this failed to discern which components of the discharge process are most likely to yield a reduction in 30 day readmission rates, it is ongoing testimony to the difficulty and complexity of the discharge process, the multi-factorial nature of readmissions, and lack of correlation between what care teams document and what they actually do (abstract)
Dr. Scheurer is a clinical hospitalist and the Medical Director of Quality and Safety at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, and is Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, completed her residency at Duke University, and completed her Masters in Clinical Research at the Medical University of South Carolina. She also serves as the Web Editor and Physician Advisor for the Society of Hospital Medicine.