Decreasing Hospital Admissions: An NP's Role in Aged Care
Decreasing Hospital Admissions: NPs Roles Highlighted in Aged Care
A recent report released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare suggests the role of Nurse Practitioners in decreasing hospital admissions in the aged care sector. As cited from their 2013 publication, Dementia care in hospitals: costs and strategies:
It was found that the likelihood of a person with Alzhemier’s disease (or related dementia) experiencing an acute care –sensitive hospitalization was reduced by 62% in care facilities with an on-site NP. This was mainly due to a sharp fall in the hospitalisation rate for infectious acute care-sensitive conditions, which fell by 71% among residents with Alzhemier’s disease. Similarly, Porell & Carter (2005) reported that aged care facilities which were staffed with a full-time NP had between 19 and 23 fewer discretionary hospitalisations per year for every 100 residents (Porell & Carter 2005).
Although the study cited was based in the United States, it contributes to the ever-increasing evidence base for Nurse Practitioner (NP) practice and further demonstrates and bolsters support for the NP role in Australia. Currently there is research being funded by the Australian Government that is looking at diverse models of care using NPs in the aged care sector. It is hoped to highlight some of these same benefits, as well as identify system-wide barriers which restrict or inhibit the role from achieving its full potential.
To read the report, click on the image: