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Patients may need better info when leaving hospitals

Reuters, August 21, 2013

(Reuters Health) - Older patients may think they understand everything doctors tell them when they are released from the hospital, but a new U.S. study found several gaps in what they remember and areas where instructions could be clearer. Out of nearly 400 patients discharged from a large academic medical center, 96 percent reported knowing why they had been hospitalized, but only about 60 percent could accurately describe their diagnoses, for instance. "Patients were very positive, but when we asked them about actual facts, they could not tell us," said Dr. Leora Horwitz, the study's lead author from the Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut.