Hospital Admission from the Emergency Department for Patients Diagnosed with Heart Failure
Approximately 25% of those hospitalized with congestive heart failure are readmitted within 30 days after discharge. Because researchers and policy makers consider hospital readmission within 30 days for patients with heart failure to be a quality of care issue, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has imposed financial penalties of up to 3% of a hospital's Medicare revenue for 1 year for excessive readmissions, potentially impacting the financial sustainability of some organizations. The purpose of the study was to address the research gap regarding the outcome quality measure of hospital admissions from the emergency department (ED) and 2 each process and structure variables. The Donabedian conceptual framework was used to assess quality of care through the triad of structure, process, and outcome. The quantitative study comprised analysis of cross-sectional archival data from the 2015 National Hospital Ambulatory Care Survey using cross-tabulations with chi-square followed by multiple logistic regression analysis. Findings showed that process quality measures of being seen in the ED within 72 hours and total laboratory tests obtained in the ED were predictive of lower likelihood of admission. The structure quality measure of insurance was not predictive; however, being seen by provider type consulting physician was predictive of higher likelihood of admission, whereas being seen by a nurse practitioner was predictive of lower likelihood of hospital admission. The implications of this study for social change are helping hospitals maintain financial stability through avoidance of financial penalties for heart failure readmission, supporting access to care for patients by avoiding hospital closures.