End of life trends

This large retrospective cohort of Medicare Fee For Service beneficiaries found from 2000 to 2009, fewer patient died in acute care (33% vs 25%), and hospice use at the time of death increased (22% vs 28%) but ICU use in the last month of life increased from 24% to 29%, and the number experiencing a care transition in the last 3 days of life increased from 10% to 14%. Although patients are now more likely to die out of the hospital and in hospice care, they are more likely to utilize ICU care and be transitioned around, shortly before death (abstract).

Danielle Scheurer

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.

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