Rehospitalization in a National Population of Home Health Care Patients with Heart Failure
Article first published online: 23 APR 2012
© Health Research and Educational Trust
Health Services Research
Volume 47, Issue 6, pages 2316–2338, December 2012
How to Cite
Madigan, E. A., Gordon, N. H., Fortinsky, R. H., Koroukian, S. M., Piña, I. and Riggs, J. S. (2012), Rehospitalization in a National Population of Home Health Care Patients with Heart Failure. Health Services Research, 47: 2316–2338. doi: 10.1111/j.1475-6773.2012.01416.x
- Issue published online: 12 NOV 2012
- Article first published online: 23 APR 2012
- National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute
- National Institutes of Health. Grant Number: R01HL085725-02
- Heart failure;
- outcomes research;
- home health care
Patients with heart failure (HF) have high rates of rehospitalization. Home health care (HHC) patients with HF are not well studied in this regard. The objectives of this study were to determine patient, HHC agency, and geographic (i.e., area variation) factors related to 30-day rehospitalization in a national population of HHC patients with HF, and to describe the extent to which rehospitalizations were potentially avoidable.
Chronic Condition Warehouse data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.
Retrospective cohort design.
The 2005 national population of HHC patients was matched with hospital and HHC claims, the Provider of Service file, and the Area Resource File.
The 30-day rehospitalization rate was 26 percent with 42 percent of patients having cardiac-related diagnoses for the rehospitalization. Factors with the strongest association with rehospitalization were consistent between the multilevel model and Cox proportional hazard models: number of prior hospital stays, higher HHC visit intensity category, and dyspnea severity at HHC admission. Substantial numbers of rehospitalizations were judged to be potentially avoidable.
The persistently high rates of rehospitalization have been difficult to address. There are health care-specific actions and policy implications that are worth examining to improve rehospitalization rates.