Author(s): Caplan GA, Meller A, Squires B, Chan S, Willett W
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Abstract BACKGROUND: the number of nursing home residents (NHRs) in hospital is increasing although hospital admission may be deleterious to their health. OBJECTIVE: to evaluate a system of educating residents, their families, staff and general practitioners about outcomes of dementia, advance care planning (ACP) and hospital in the home. METHODS: we employed one clinical nurse consultant, who utilised the 'Let Me Decide' Advance Care Directive. The intervention area consisted of two hospitals and the 21 nursing homes (NHs) around them compared with another, geographically separate, hospital and the 13 homes around it. We conducted a controlled evaluation monitoring emergency admissions to hospital. RESULTS: emergency calls to the ambulance service from intervention NHs decreased (intervention versus control; -1 versus +21\%; P = 0.0019). The risk of a resident being in an intervention hospital bed for a day compared with in a control hospital bed, per NH bed, fell by a quarter from being initially similar [Relative Risk (RR) = 1.01; 95\% confidence interval (CI) 0.98-1.04; P = 0.442] to being lower (RR = 0.74; 95\% CI 0.72-0.77; P<0.0001). There was no significant change in mortality in the intervention homes, but in the control homes mortality rose in the third year to be 11.2 per 100 beds higher than in the intervention area (P<0.05). CONCLUSION: ACP and hospital in the home can result in decreased hospital admission and mortality of NHRs.
This article was published in Age Ageing
and referenced in Journal of Palliative Care & Medicine