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Hosp Community Psychiatry. 1984 Jul;35(7):702-6.

The effects of a referral coordinator on compliance with psychiatric discharge plans.


To investigate the effectiveness of a referral coordinator on patient compliance with initial aftercare referrals, the authors conducted a three-phase study involving 554 adult psychiatric patients at a Veterans Administration medical center. The first phase of the study established baseline data on compliance; the second phase monitored compliance following staff attempts to provide patients with more assistance in making initial aftercare appointments; and the third phase monitored compliance following the interventions of the referral coordinator. Analysis of the data on patient, hospital, and treatment characteristics indicated a marked increase in aftercare compliance after the addition of the referral coordinator to the treatment team. Compliance was especially increased in the most difficult patient group--the more acutely disturbed, chronic older patients. The authors discuss the implications of the results for discharge planning.

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