Hospitalization is disrupting to elderly individuals and puts them at greater risk for complications and infections. Hospitalization also increases the likelihood of reduced functioning on return to the skilled nursing facility.
Hospital readmissions not only have the potential for negative physical, emotional and psychological impacts on individuals in skilled nursing care, but also cost the Medicare program billions of dollars.
Preventing these events whenever possible is always beneficial to patients and has been identified by policymakers and providers as an opportunity to reduce overall health care system costs through improvements in quality. The issue has become a top priority for CMS and managed care programs over the past several years.