Study finds post-discharge mortality rates and 30-day readmission rates have increased for heart failure patients

Post-discharge mortality rates and 30-day readmission rates increased for heart failure patients between 1993 and 2006.

A study in the Journal of the American Medical Association examined hospitalizations among almost 7 million Medicare patients between 1993 and 2006. Key findings include:

  • The average length of stay for heart failure patients decreased by 2.5 days
  • The in-hospital death rate fell from 8.5 percent to 4.3 percent
  • The overall death rate for the 30-day period starting with hospital admission increased, from 4.3 percent in 1993 to 6.4 percent in 2006
  • 20.1 percent of those who left the hospital were readmitted in 2006, compared to 17.1 percent in 1993

(Sources: The Advisory Board Daily Briefing, http://advisoryboard.com, June 1, 2010; Journal of the American Medical Association, http://jama.ama-assn.org, June 2, 2010)