A study confirms the quality of medical care patients receive when they are admitted to a hospital is the main predictor of their readmission risk.

According to new research conducted at Harvard School of Public Health, improving the quality of initial surgical care can do a lot to help reduce the rates of readmissions and the costs associated with such hospital readmissions. Patients readmitted to the hospital within one month of being discharged cost the American economy billions of dollars every year.

There has been plenty of research into ways to reduce the rates of readmissions. However, the new study which involved nearly 5,000 patients who were discharged after they had undergone major surgery also shows when it comes to readmission rates, high-quality hospitals that have the lowest mortality rates also have lower admission rates.

The results of the study were published recently in the New England Journal of Medicine and indicate readmission rates are boosted by complications that occur during the hospitalization process. Hospitals that have a much higher level of quality care are more likely to report lower readmission rates. Those findings are likely to boost plans by the US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to add levels of surgical care to its penalty program for hospital readmissions.

Some hospitals across the country have already established systems in place that are targeted at helping reduce the rate of readmissions. The researchers say it is worth finding out what exactly these hospitals are doing, to reduce these rates and emulating these strategies. It is highly likely these hospitals have standardized their surgical processes and the exact same recommended treatments are followed every single time, lowering the risk of surgical complications and reducing readmission rates.

If you feel you or your family member have been harmed as a result of negligence or medical malpractice, please contact Michels & Lew attorneys today at 310-444-1200.