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Neurohospitalist. 2011 Apr;1(2):67-70. doi: 10.1177/1941875210394202.

Neurohospitalists reduce length of stay for patients with ischemic stroke.

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1
Department of Neurology, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Neurohospitalists may improve the efficiency and quality of care delivered to hospitalized patients with neurological disease. However, there is limited systematic data to support this hypothesis. The primary purpose of this study was to compare length of stay (LOS) for patients with ischemic stroke cared for by either neurohospitalists or community-based neurologists at a single institution.

METHODS:

A retrospective chart review was performed for all patients with ischemic stroke discharged from St. Luke's Hospital in Jacksonville, Florida, between January 2006 and December 2007. The LOS for patients cared for by neurohospitalists was compared to the LOS for patients cared for by community neurologists. Compliance with Joint Commission inpatient stroke quality metrics was also compared.

RESULTS:

A total of 533 patients were discharged with a principal diagnosis of ischemic stroke over the 24-month study period. Neurohospitalists cared for 313 patients with mean (± SD) LOS of 4.9 (5.2) days (95% CI: 4.3-5.5 days), and community-based neurologists cared for 220 patients with a mean LOS of 6.5 (8.2) days (95% CI: 5.4-7.6 days). The mean LOS was significantly less for the neurohospitalists compared to the community-based neurologists (P = .005). Neurohospitalists achieved a higher compliance rate in 10 of 11 inpatient stroke quality metrics and achieved significantly higher compliance rate of smoking cessation education (P = .019).

CONCLUSIONS:

Neurohospitalists achieved significantly shorter LOS for patients with ischemic stroke compared to community-based neurologists. These data suggest that neurohospitalists can also improve compliance with quality metrics necessary for Joint Commission Primary Stroke Center designation.

KEYWORDS:

length of stay; neurohospitalist; neurology hospitalist; quality metrics; stroke

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