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Weak Link Found Between Readmissions, Mortality

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, February 13, 2013

Second, several large hospitals with good reputations but high readmission rates also had lower-than-average or average 30-day mortality rates.

Krumholz and co-authors emphasized that readmission measures and mortality measures "convey distinct information."

One caveat about the study is that data was collected prior to the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, which legislated two separate payment incentives for reducing readmissions and mortality within 30 days of discharge, penalties that took effect for the first time only four months ago. 

Whether data collected since then will change these results remains to be seen.

Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
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