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Hospital readmissions remain frequent, and are partly attributable to patients' social needs. The authors sought to examine whether local community levels of social capital are associated with hospital readmission rates. Social capital refers to the connections among members of a society that foster norms of reciprocity and trust, which may influence the availability of support for postdischarge recovery after hospitalization. Associations between hospital-wide, risk-stratified readmission rates for hospitals in the United States (n = 4298) and levels of social capital in the hospitals' service areas were examined. Social capital was measured by an index of participation in associational activities and civic affairs. A multivariate linear regression model was used to adjust for hospital and community factors such as hospital financial performance, race, income, and availability of heath care services. Results showed that higher social capital was significantly associated with lower readmission rates (P < .01), a finding that held across income-stratified analyses as well as sensitivity analyses that included hospital performance on process quality measures and hospital community engagement activities. A hospital is unlikely to be able to influence prevailing levels of social capital in its region, but in areas of low social capital, it may be possible for public or philanthropic sectors to buttress the types of institutions that address nonmedical causes of readmission.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Population health management
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With no prior prospective study to demonstrate the benefit of an early post-discharge follow-up appointment in reducing readmission rates in the post-myocardial infarction (MI patient popu...
The collective designation of three organizations with common membership: the European Economic Community (Common Market), the European Coal and Steel Community, and the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom). It was known as the European Community until 1994. It is primarily an economic union with the principal objectives of free movement of goods, capital, and labor. Professional services, social, medical and paramedical, are subsumed under labor. The constituent countries are Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. (The World Almanac and Book of Facts 1997, p842)
Subsequent admissions of a patient to a hospital or other health care institution for treatment.
Hospital department responsible for administering and providing social services to patients and their families.
Hospital-sponsored provision of health services, such as nursing, therapy, and health-related homemaker or social services, in the patient's home. (Hospital Administration Terminology, 2d ed)
Federal program, created by Public Law 89-97, Title XVIII-Health Insurance for the Aged, a 1965 amendment to the Social Security Act, that provides health insurance benefits to persons over the age of 65 and others eligible for Social Security benefits. It consists of two separate but coordinated programs: hospital insurance (MEDICARE PART A) and supplementary medical insurance (MEDICARE PART B). (Hospital Administration Terminology, AHA, 2d ed and A Discursive Dictionary of Health Care, US House of Representatives, 1976)