Hong Kong Med J 2007;13(Suppl 5):S8-12
Community nurse specialists and prevention of readmissions in older patients with chronic lung disease and cardiac failure
TCY Kwok, J Woo, E Lau, D Lee, C Tang, SM McGhee
Department of Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong
1. A post-discharge follow-up by community nurses significantly reduced length of stay in acute hospital and accident and emergency attendances in older cardiac failure patients.
2. Community nursing intervention also resulted in minor improvements in dyspnoea and handicap levels in older cardiac failure patients.
3. Total public health care costs tended to be reduced by community nursing for older cardiac failure patients.
4. Post-discharge follow-up by community nurses for older patients with chronic lung disease patients had no measurable benefit in terms of hospital readmission rates, length of hospital stay, or any functional and psychological outcomes.
5. The effectiveness of community nursing may vary according to the client groups. It is necessary for community nursing to define its target group, the intervention protocols and the expected outcomes, so that its effectiveness can be evaluated.