Identifying, addressing behavioral risk factors among cardiac patients could help reduce early readmission rates

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Researchers from Henry Ford Hospital have identified behavioral risk factors for cardiac patients that increase the likelihood of hospital readmission within 30 days of leaving hospital care. These include immediate memory problems, a history of psychiatric treatment and antidepressant use.

Identifying and addressing these conditions earlier could both help contain spiraling health care costs and better protect a patient’s health by reducing his or her exposure to the health risks associated with hospital stays.  

In a press release from Henry Ford Health System, lead author Mark W. Ketterer, Ph.D., said:

“Even severe heart disease, except in the extreme, appears to be manageable after release from the hospital unless it’s complicated by one or more of the behavioral factors.”

The study included 84 patients being treated for congestive heart failure at Henry Ford Hospital. The participants were interviewed regarding basic clinical and demographic information, and responded to questionnaires that measured their levels of depression, anxiety and spirituality. 

The journal Psychosomatics published the study, Behavioral Factors and Hospital Admissions/Readmissions in Patients With CHF, this month.