Hospitals Are Getting Better at Sharing Medication Histories and Reducing Unnecessary Stays
Nearly half of all hospitals electronically exchanged patients’ medication history with other hospitals by 2013, and unnecessary hospitalizations were reduced more than 20 percent, according to AHRQ’s new Chartbook on Care Coordination. The Chartbook measures how well the nation is promoting effective communication and coordination of care, which leads to better long-term health outcomes: fewer unnecessary hospitalizations, repeated tests, conflicting prescriptions and clearer communication between providers and patients.
This Care Coordination Chartbook is part of a family of documents and tools that support the National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Reports and 5th Anniversary Update on the National Quality Strategy. The reports provide an overview of the quality of U.S. health care as well as disparities in care for various racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups.
From 2009 to 2013, the percentage of hospitals that electronically exchanged patients’ medication history with hospitals outside their system increased from 13.4 percent to 49.6 percent. From 2005 to 2013, the rate of potentially avoidable hospitalizations for all conditions except COPD dropped by about 23 percent. When all of a patient's health care providers coordinate their efforts, the patient is more likely to receive appropriate care and support, when and how the patient needs and wants it.
AHRQ provides tools and resources to improve care coordination in various health care settings, including the Re-Engineered Discharge (RED) Toolkit and MATCH Toolkit for Medication Reconciliation