Skilled nursing providers would enjoy reduced readmission rates if they did more to ensure that seniors recovering from heart failure had home health services lined up upon discharge, new research reveals.  

Investigators found that only that 20% of discharged patients in this class received home health services. Those who did had lower 30-day readmission rates (22.8%) than those discharged without such services lined up (24.5%). 

“Recovery from a hospitalization can sometimes take longer than expected and the support provided by the skilled nursing facility and then home health care may be what vulnerable patients need to get better,” said lead study author Himali Weerahandi, M.D.

Investigators used Medicare fee-for-service data between 2012 and 2015 for the study. The findings were published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society last month.