Home Health Agency Work Environments and Hospitalizations

Source: Olga Jarrín, Linda Flynn, Eileen T. Lake, Linda H. Aiken, Medical Care, Vol. 52 no. 10, October 2014
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From the abstract:
Background: An important goal of home health care is to assist patients to remain in community living arrangements. Yet home care often fails to prevent hospitalizations and to facilitate discharges to community living, thus putting patients at risk of additional health challenges and increasing care costs.

Objectives: To determine the relationship between home health agency work environments and agency-level rates of acute hospitalization and discharges to community living.

Results: Home health agencies with good work environments had lower rates of acute hospitalizations and higher rates of patient discharges to community living arrangements compared with home health agencies with poor work environments.

Conclusion: Improved work environments in home health agencies hold promise for optimizing patient outcomes and reducing use of expensive hospital and institutional care.