Shorter Hospital Stays Leave Patients to Heal Themselves

Surgery is easier and faster than ever before: Nearly 65% of all surgeries don’t require an overnight hospital stay, compared to 16% in 1980. Hospitals that once kept patients for three weeks after some major operations now discharge them within a matter of days. But the body still heals at its own pace, and reduced time in hospital care means patients are assuming more responsibility for their own recovery—and more risks. Patients not only have to perform rehabilitation regimens at home, but they are more often caring for their own incision wounds and dressings and having to watch for signs of infections and blood clots. They also may be managing drains, implanted IV ports and pumps.

Full article on shorter hospitals stays.

Comments (5)

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  1. Larry C. says:

    Next thing you know they will be removing their own sutures.

  2. Joe S. says:

    An obvious way of reducing third-party-payer costs is to shift costs to the patients.

  3. Devon Herrick says:

    During the past few years there have been advances in surgical techniques, such as minimally invasive surgeries, that have quicker healing times. However, the United States uses hospitals in a different way that many European countries. Our costs per day are higher because the shorter stays involve sicker patients. Hospitals employ discharge planners to arrange care in the appropriate setting. Medicare patients, for example, might be discharged to a skilled nursing facility (SNF) after surgery. From the SNF, patients might stay at a nursing home paid for by Medicare. The next step in the continuum of care may involve discharge to home with (Medicare) home care. As the patient recuperates, later care is provided by a family member or self-care with less frequent visits by a home care nurse or therapy aide.

  4. Bruce says:

    If people would learn some first aid, maybe they could handle the whole episode themselves — from start to finish.

  5. Sarah says:

    I hope my tweet back wasn’t misinterpreted! I just know you miss your sweet boys on long cnilic days, thus my response. In any case, I am SO glad that you feel so confident and at peace about the choices you are making for your children, your family, and yourself! From your posts here, I know you sometimes wrestle with your decisions, and I can tell you, so do the SAHM/Ds! I think everyone wonders about the path not taken, but as long as YOU are happy and confident in your decision, you will model the best of yourself to your children!For selfish reasons, I am glad that you continue to practice. But unselfishly, I also think that your interaction with patients keeps your persective fresh and keeps you abreast of the challenges of what your patients (and their families) are facing. It makes you more effective on a national level. When I worked in sales, there was nothing more frustrating than a top-level executive handing down orders who hadn’t been in the field for a decade or longer. Their recommendations were often out-of-date and out-of-touch. The best executives were those that made sure to interact with the field as often as possible. Their recommendations and plan of actions were usually the most effective. I would imagine the same is true in this case as well. You can make relevent, real-world recommendations, based not only on your vast knowledge, but also your intimate experiences on the front-lines .We are so blessed that you share so much of yourself here and in cnilic! Good luck with your travels this fall we will miss you while you are gone, but it sounds like you’ll be doing a lot of good while you are away!VA:F [1.9.10_1130]please wait…(1 vote cast)