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Hospital Readmission Rates Higher for Chronic Conditions

AHRQ News and Numbers, March 7, 2012

AHRQ News and Numbers provides statistical highlights on the use and cost of health services and health insurance in the United States.

The readmission rate following a hospital stay for a chronic condition such as congestive heart failure or diabetes can be substantially higher than for an acute condition like pneumonia or a heart attack, according to the latest News and Numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

The Federal agency's analysis of 30-day hospital readmissions in 2008 found that:

  • Among patients age 65 and older covered by Medicare, the readmission rate following a nonsurgical hospitalization was higher for chronic conditions (23 percent) than for acute conditions (19 percent).
  • For adults age 18 to 44 covered by Medicaid, the readmission rate following a nonsurgical hospitalization was about one-third higher for chronic conditions (26 percent) than for acute conditions (19 percent).
  • The 30-day readmission rate was higher for a nonsurgical hospitalization (1 in 5) compared with a surgical hospitalization (1 in 8).

This AHRQ News and Numbers summary is based on data from Statistical Brief #127: 30-Day Readmissions following Hospitalizations for Chronic vs. Acute Conditions, 2008. The report uses data from the State Inpatient Databases for 15 States—Arkansas, California, Florida, Hawaii, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, and Washington—that represent 42 percent of the total U.S. population. For information about this AHRQ database, go to http://www.ahrq.gov/data/hcup/datahcup.htm.

For additional information, or to speak with an AHRQ data expert, please contact Linwood Norman at Linwood.Norman@ahrq.hhs.gov or (301) 427-1248.

Current as of March 2012
Internet Citation: Hospital Readmission Rates Higher for Chronic Conditions: AHRQ News and Numbers, March 7, 2012. March 2012. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://archive.ahrq.gov/news/newsroom/news-and-numbers/030712.html

 

The information on this page is archived and provided for reference purposes only.

 

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