Results: 24-hour discharge summary completion rate was significantly higher using a dedicated program on the hospitalist service (90% vs 82%, p<0.05). No statistically significant effect on 30 day all-cause readmission rate (16.6% vs 17.6%) was observed. Furthermore, there was no difference in 7 day readmission rate (6.0% vs 5.2%), or 7 day return to ER (4.0% vs 3.2%) between hospitalist and teaching ward services.
Conclusions: Our data demonstrates that while the timeliness of discharge summaries can be improved by a dedicated program, this does not correlate with a reduction in readmission rate or return to ER following discharge. No observable improvement to the 30-day readmission rate or the rate at which patients revisited the ER/ were readmitted within 7 days (which is being seen as possibly a better indicator of quality of care transition) was found with reduction in time to discharge summary completion. We infer that there could likely be diminishing returns to targeting a discharge summary turnaround time that is significantly less than 72 hours. Additionally, programs to improve timeliness of discharge summary completion on teaching services will be necessary to achieve standards which have been proposed as a quality metric.
To cite this abstract:Thomas, A; Patel, S; Lehman, F; Duncan-Batson, MS; Weissler, J . IMPROVEMENT IN 24-HOUR DISCHARGE SUMMARY COMPLETION RATE DOES NOT CORRELATE WITH REDUCED READMISSIONS. Abstract published at Hospital Medicine 2017, May 1-4, 2017; Las Vegas, Nev. Abstract 269. Journal of Hospital Medicine. 2017; 12 (suppl 2). https://www.shmabstracts.com/abstract/improvement-in-24-hour-discharge-summary-completion-rate-does-not-correlate-with-reduced-readmissions/. Accessed January 20, 2020.