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J Patient Saf. 2019 Mar 13. doi: 10.1097/PTS.0000000000000596. [Epub ahead of print]

Effectiveness of Discharge Education With the Teach-Back Method on 30-Day Readmission: A Systematic Review.

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College of Nursing,·Mo-Im Kim Nursing Research Institute, Yonsei University.
College of Nursing, Graduate School, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea.



Teach-back methods are reported to improve patient outcomes by encouraging patient understanding and participation and are increasingly being used in various clinical settings. This study attempts to identify the effectiveness of discharge education using the teach-back method on 30-day readmission.


MEDLINE, CINAHL, Embase, The Cochrane Library, and Web of Science were used to search experimental studies. The search terms were "discharged patient," "teach-back," and "30-day readmission" published in English up until July 2017. Two trained reviewers performed a critical appraisal of retrieved studies using the Risk of Bias Assessment tool for Nonrandomized Studies. Data were analyzed using Cochrane Review Manager (Revman) software 5.2.


A total of five studies were analyzed (3 studies on heart failure, 1 study on total joint replacement, and 1 study on a coronary artery bypass graft). The main content of the teach-back education was to confirm and reinforce the patients' comprehension of health-related information. Among the five studies, three studies were included in the meta-analysis. The odds ratio of 30-day readmission for discharge education with the teach-back method and usual care was 0.55 (95% confidence interval, 0.34-0.91; P = 0.02). The I score was 0%, which means that the analyzed studies are homogeneous.


The results indicate that discharge education with the teach-back method resulted in a 45% reduction in 30-day readmission. However, only a few studies were included in the analysis, and they showed a high risk of selection bias. Therefore, we suggest that well-designed randomized controlled trials be conducted.

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