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NeuroRehabilitation. 2014;34(3):531-40. doi: 10.3233/NRE-141056.

Transitions between SNF and home-based care in patients with multiple sclerosis.

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Department of Surgery, University of Rochester School of Medicine, Rochester, NY, USA Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Rochester School of Medicine, Rochester, NY, USA.
Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Rochester School of Medicine, Rochester, NY, USA.
Jacobs Neurologic Institute, State University of New York at Buffalo, New York, NY, USA.
Department of Medicine and Health Policy Research Institute, University of California, Irvine, CA, USA.



To assess patient characteristics and risk factors associated with care transitions between skilled nursing facility (SNF) and home care for patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) in an effort to improve outcomes and optimize patient care pathways.


MS is a chronic neurologic illness of younger adults that is associated with physical disability, cognitive impairment and a high need for supportive services.


The study was based on the 2005 Nursing Home Minimum Data Set and the Outcome and Assessment Information Set data (n = 10,064). We performed multivariate evaluation of patient risk factors for skilled nursing facility (SNF) admission and disposition while controlling for potential patient self-selection and other characteristics that affect care utilization.


MS patients with recent history of home care use were less likely to be admitted to an acute care hospital and had higher physical disability at SNF admission than SNF patients who did not use home care. Insurance type (Medicaid) and availability of informal caregivers were associated with the use of homecare services after a SNF stay, while patient demographic and clinical characteristics did not explain SNF disposition.


Future studies should explore the association between the local availability and affordability of home-based services and physician attitude about community-based care management of disabled patients.


Multiple Sclerosis (MS); Skilled nursing facility (SNF); cognitive impairment; disability; home health care (HHC)

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