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Hospitals find ways to limit readmissions (VA)

The Virginian-Pilot, March 1, 2012

A clinic is among several efforts by South Hampton Roads hospitals to help patients stay healthy enough to avoid return visits. About $25 billion is wasted annually on such rehospitalizations, according to a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers' Health Research Institute. So far, at least one program has documented monetary savings. Bon Secours "life coaches" link uninsured emergency room patients with free or reduced-price primary care at nearby clinics. Only 12 of 1,000 patients seen by DePaul Medical Center's two life coaches in 2010 returned to the emergency department for the same complaint that year, and the Norfolk hospital saved an estimated $150,000.