Assisted early mobility for hospitalized older veterans: preliminary data from the STRIDE program.
An important contributor to hospital-associated disability is immobility during hospitalization. Preliminary results from STRIDE, a clinical demonstration program of supervised walking for older adults admitted to the hospital with medical illness, are reported. The STRIDE program consisted of a targeted gait and balance assessment by a physical therapist, followed by daily walks supervised by a recreation therapy assistant for the duration of the hospital stay. To examine program effectiveness, STRIDE participants (n = 92) were compared with individuals referred but not enrolled (because of refusal or because program was at capacity, n = 35). Median length of stay was 4.7 days for STRIDE participants and 5.7 days for individuals receiving usual care (P = .31). There was one inpatient fall in each group (not associated with a STRIDE walk). Overall, 92% of STRIDE participants were discharged to home (rather than a skilled nursing facility (SNF)) compared to 74% of individuals receiving usual care (P = .007). Thirty-day emergency department visit rates and readmission rates were not significantly different between the two groups. STRIDE, a supervised walking program for hospitalized older adults, was feasible and safe, and program participants were less likely to be discharged to a SNF than a demographically similar comparison group. STRIDE is a promising interdisciplinary approach to promoting mobility and improving outcomes in hospitalized older adults.
Hastings, SN; Sloane, R; Morey, MC; Pavon, JM; Hoenig, H
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