Psychological Conditions Increase Early Hospital Readmission Rate in Patients with COPD

Pharmacy Times, December 2015 Heart Health, Volume 81, Issue 12

Patients who develop a psychological conditions suck as depression anxiety, psychosis, or alcohol/drug abuse are more likely to be readmitted early to a hospital for complications related to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, recent study results suggest.

Patients who develop a psychological conditions such as depression anxiety, psychosis, or alcohol/drug abuse are more likely to be readmitted early to a hospital for complications related to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), recent study results suggest.'

The study, published in CHEST Journal, examined data on a sample of Medicare beneficiaries from 2001 to 2011. During this time, 80,088 fee-for-service Medicare patents were hospitalized 135,498 times for COPD; in 30,218 (22%) of these hospitalizations, the admit- ted patient had 1 or more psychological conditions.

The research team found that the rate of early readmission was 5% to 14% higher for patients with at least 1 psychological condition than it was for those who had not developed a psychological condition, with readmission rates proving even higher for patients who had more than 1 psychological condition and a low income level. Patients with at least 1 psychological condition also spent a longer initial length of time in the hospital and had a lower rate of outpatient follow-up visits within the first month after discharge com- pared with those who lacked a psychological condition.

“Because of the complexity of this situation, hospitals and health care providers need more guidance to reduce readmission in patients with COPD, and it may not be practical to penalize hospitals for higher early readmission rates,” said study author Gurinder Singh, MD, in a press release. “More studies are needed in this area.”