Association of early physician follow-up and 30-day readmission after non-ST-segment-elevation myocardial infarction among older patients.
Hospital readmission rates within 30 days after acute myocardial infarction are a national performance metric. Previous data suggest that early physician follow-up after heart failure hospitalizations can reduce readmissions; whether these results can be extended to acute myocardial infarction is unclear.We analyzed data from the Can Rapid Risk Stratification of Unstable Angina Patients Suppress Adverse Outcomes With Early Implementation of the ACC/AHA Guidelines (CRUSADE) Registry linked with Medicare claims from 2003 to 2006 for 25 872 non-ST-segment-elevation myocardial infarction patients ≥65 years of age discharged home from 228 hospitals with >25 patients and full revascularization capabilities. After adjusting for patient, treatment, and hospital characteristics, we examined the relationship between hospital-level physician follow-up within 7 days of discharge and 30-day all-cause readmission using logistic regression. The median hospital-level percentage of patients receiving early physician follow-up was 23.3% (interquartile range, 17.1%-29.1%). Among 24 165 patients with Medicare fee-for-service eligibility 30 days after discharge, 18.5% of patients were readmitted within 30 days of index hospitalization. Unadjusted and adjusted rates of 30-day readmission did not differ among quartiles of hospital-level early physician follow-up. Similarly, each 5% increase in hospital early follow-up was associated with an insignificant change in risk for readmission (adjusted odds ratio, 0.99; 95% confidence interval, 0.97-1.02; P=0.60). Sensitivity analyses extended these null findings to 30-day cardiovascular readmissions, high-risk subgroups, and early cardiology follow-up.Although rates of early physician follow-up after acute myocardial infarction varied among US hospitals, hospitals with higher early follow-up rates did not have lower 30-day readmission rates. Targeting strategies other than early physician follow-up may be necessary to reduce readmissions in this population.
Hess, CN; Shah, BR; Peng, SA; Thomas, L; Roe, MT; Peterson, ED
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