Thursday, February 5, 2015

Are You Seeing Infants for Their First Well-child Visit Early Enough to Prevent Readmission?

 German Tenirio @Flickr
          It is recommended that the first well-child visit following discharge from the well-baby nursery occur within 48 hours for infants discharged in less than 48 hours and within 3-5 days for those who do stay more than 48 hours.  How effective are these guidelines in preventing unintended readmissions to the hospital? 
Shakib et al. (doi:10.1542/peds.2014-2329) opted to study this question using a large data-set in Utah that tracked both well child visits and readmission rates for a population of over 79,000 newborns. While 63% of these babies went home in less than 48 hours post-birth, only 15% had a well-child visit in 72 hours (and less in the recommended 48 hours).  To no surprise, those infants who were seen shortly after discharge had a 15% lower readmission rate than those with a later visit. 
          How strictly do you adhere to seeing early discharged babies for a visit within 48-72 hours?  Do you agree seeing babies shortly after birth has helped you prevent a readmission and if so, what type of readmission are you finding your can prevent? We would love to hear your take on this study, and whether or not you feel a 48 hour office visit does help reduce readmissions by sharing your comments via a response to this blog, an e-letter or our Facebook or Twitter sites.

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