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Shorter Hospital Stay After Hip Replacement Surgery

Researchers Say Shorter Hospital Stay Could Be Behind Increase in Hospital Readmission Rates After Hip Replacement

Shorter Hospital Stays: Implications

The finding of a “marked decrease” in hospital length of stay after hip replacement surgery may have policy implications, the authors write, adding that hospitals may be motivated to reduce length of stay for payment reasons.

“We found that the reduction in hospital [length of stay] in both primary and revision total hip [replacement] patients was accompanied by a significant increase in the proportion of patients discharged to post-acute care facilities” such as nursing homes and rehabilitation centers “and a significant reduction in the proportion of patients discharged directly home.”

Readmission rates have increased markedly in recent years, suggesting, among other things, that “perpetual reductions” in hospital lengths of stay seem to be occurring.

The study is published in the April 20 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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