Next up in the news is a look at the continuing battle to reduce hospital complications and keep patients from getting readmitted to the hospital. New research and a study from the American College of Surgeons seems to point to surgical complications as the main reason for readmission.

Infection and Bleeding Cause For Return

Beautiful young women surgeons performing a surgeryThe study’s authors looked at data from a half million surgeries in the U.S. They found that more than 5% of patients looked at were readmitted because of a complication related back to a surgical procedure in the hospital. Infection was the most common reason for readmission with 20% of the readmissions related to that complication. Interestingly enough, some surgical procedures were more likely than others to have complications and readmission including lower leg vascular bypass and hysterectomy.

Other complications that caused readmission included intestinal obstruction for abdominal surgeries and bleeding for all surgeries. The study cites the need for further research and for the entire surgical and medical group in the hospital to work together as a team to prevent complications and to followup effectively with the patients after discharge to catch problems before they require readmission.

The study’s findings means that primarily it will fall to nurses both at the hospital and in the home care setting to provide better discharge and follow-up care to help the patients recognize complications early enough that they might be able to be treated in the home for the problem rather than have to come back to the hospital.

This works better for every one concerned. The patients would rather remain at home and the hospitals want to avoid readmission penalties. Nurses again appear to be the glue that can hold this process together and improve upon it.

Make sure you follow-up on the links for this news item and all of the other news and additional resource links from this week’s episode – RSV Versus Flu Interview Segment and Episode 332.

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