New research shows most urgent hospital readmissions are hard to avoid

August 22, 2011

New research led by Dr. Carl van Walraven suggests that contrary to popular belief, most urgent hospital readmissions can’t be blamed on medical errors or gaps in care. After analyzing records from nearly 5,000 patients from 11 Ontario hospitals, Dr. van Walraven and his colleagues found that just 16% of urgent readmissions were potentially avoidable – the rest were due simply to health problems. This research could lead to more reliable ways to measure and improve hospital quality. See CMAJ or Ottawa Citizen for details.