Journal Article

Effect of hospital follow-up appointment on clinical event outcomes and mortality.

Grafft CA, McDonald FS, Ruud KL, et al. Archives of internal medicine. 2010;170:955-60.

Hospital readmissions due to adverse events after discharge are relatively common, and may be precipitated by medication errors and failure to follow up on pending test results—problems that could, in theory, be averted by early outpatient follow-up. However, this Mayo Clinic study found that patients who were given follow-up appointments (at a mean of 6 days after discharge) were just as likely to be readmitted or visit the emergency room within 30 days after discharge as those without follow-up. Interventions such as those in the Care Transitions study and the Project RED study have relied on more comprehensive, nurse-driven interventions to reduce readmission rates and post-discharge emergency department visits.