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ASSESSING THE IMPACT OF A NUTRITION-FOCUSED QUALITY IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM IN CARDIOPULMONARY PATIENTS

M.R. Costanzo, S. Kozmic, S. Sulo, F. Dabbous, B. Warren, J. Partridge, A. Brown, K. Sriram

J Aging Res Clin Practice 2019;8:63-69

Background: Patients with cardiopulmonary diagnoses are at high risk for hospital readmissions and prolonged hospitalizations. Nutrition-focused quality improvement programs (QIPs) can improve the care of malnourished hospitalized patients. Objectives: Data collected previously was analyzed to evaluate the impact of a nutrition-focused QIP on health outcomes in patients with cardiopulmonary diseases. Design: The QIP consisted of malnutrition risk screening, prompt initiation of oral nutritional supplements (ONS), and nutrition education. Setting: A total of 4 hospitals implemented the QIP–2 teaching hospitals and 2 community hospitals. Participants: Eligible QIP participants were hospitalized patients with any diagnosis, 18 years of age or older, at risk for malnutrition at admission, and able to consume food and beverages orally. Measurements: Data collected from the QIP patients was compared to data from historical controls to assess differences in readmission rates and length of stay (LOS). Results: Patients were mainly older adults (66 ± 17.4 years) and non-obese (85%). Univariate analysis showed significant reductions in 30-day readmission rates for the QIP group when compared with the controls (13.9% for QIP vs. 26.4% for controls), with the QIP group experiencing a 55% reduction in the odds of being readmitted (OR = 0.45, p = 0.006). Similarly, a significant reduction in LOS was reported for the QIP group (5.4 ± 5.7 days for QIP vs. 6.8 ± 5.7 days for controls) corresponding to a relative risk reduction (RR) of 20% (RR = 0.80, p = 0.0085). Logistic regression adjusting for patient characteristics showed that the QIP patients were 33% less likely to be readmitted (p = 0.33), and had a 6% RR (RR = 0.94, p = 0.55) in LOS versus controls. Conclusions: Malnourished hospitalized cardiopulmonary patients participating in a nutrition-focused QIP experienced fewer readmissions and improved LOS compared to controls. These results underscore the importance of nutrition-focused interventions as a key part of treatment for cardiopulmonary patients.

CITATION:
M.R. Costanzo ; S. Kozmic ; S. Sulo ; F. Dabbous ; B. Warren ; J. Partridge ; A. Brown ; K. Sriram (2019): Assessing the Impact of a Nutrition-Focused Quality Improvement Program in Cardiopulmonary Patients. The Journal of Aging Research and Clinical Practice (JARCP). http://dx.doi.org/10.14283/jarcp.2019.11

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