Stroke Patients – Hospital Readmissions

Angie Szumlinski News

As post-acute care providers, many of us provide care to residents who have suffered a closed head injury/stroke. Many of these residents are being transferred to our centers for short-term rehabilitation services or long-term care after a stay in acute care. Sadly, healthcare facilities, including acute care centers, tend to harbor infectious organisms just by the nature of their care model.

A study published in the National Library of Medicine (NIH) discussed the risk of readmission within 60 days of discharge from acute care. All adult ischemic stroke patients from 2006 to 2016 were incorporated into the study conducted at three New York City hospitals. What the study showed was among stroke patients, hospital-acquired (HAI) and infections present on admission (IPOA) were predictors of readmission within 60 days and infection during readmission.

This really isn’t shocking information, right? If you think about the number of residents we admit to our centers with active infection or showing signs of infection within a few days of admission, it makes sense. Add to the infection, residents with a post-stroke diagnosis are often weak, deconditioned, and may experience delirium. Bottom line, are your staff aware and alert to signs of active infection upon admission, and are you performing complete vitals and assessments every shift for the first few days? If not, you might consider it! This is the time to “catch” infections early, use the stop and watch/SBAR system or another validated tool to assist you! Let’s keep our residents healthy and in our centers! Stay the course, stay well and stay informed!