The Acute-Care Continuum: The Future of Hospital-Based Care

From Becker’s (hat tip: Ed Gaines):

Emergency physicians, hospitalists, anesthesiologists, radiologists, intensivisits and skilled-nursing providers all interact regularly as they care for patients receiving services across the acute-care continuum. Without formal pathways for handoffs, communication and patient care coordination, outcomes can suffer. For example, a studypresented at the 2013 American Thoracic Society International Conference found delayed transfer to the intensive care unit increases mortality rates in hospitalized patients. Of the patients transferred to the ICU within 6 hours of the critical Cardiac Arrest Risk Triage score, 27 percent died during admission. Researchers determined that for every hour the ICU transfer is delayed, the risk of mortality increases by 7 percent.

Coordination along the acute-care continuum simply requires physicians and providers in various hospital-based specialties work together to drive best practices and ensure communication. While this sounds simple, hospital politics can sometimes get in the way.

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