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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 68

of 'Palliative care: Nursing home'

Palliative Care Consultations in Nursing Homes and Reductions in Acute Care Use and Potentially Burdensome End-of-Life Transitions.
Miller SC, Lima JC, Intrator O, Martin E, Bull J, Hanson LC
J Am Geriatr Soc. 2016;64(11):2280. Epub 2016 Sep 19.
OBJECTIVES: To evaluate how receipt and timing of nursing home (NH) palliative care consultations (primarily by nurse practitioners with palliative care expertise) are associated with end-of-life care transitions and acute care use DESIGN: Propensity score-matched retrospective cohort study.
SETTING: Forty-six NHs in two states.
PARTICIPANTS: Nursing home residents who died from 2006 to 2010 stratified according to days between initial consultation and death (≤7, 8-30, 31-60, 61-180). Propensity score matching identified three controls (n = 1,174) according to strata for each consultation recipient (n = 477).
MEASUREMENTS: Outcomes were hospitalizations in the last 7, 30, and 60 days of life; emergency department (ED) visits in the last 30 and 60 days; and any potentially burdensome care transition, defined as hospitalization or hospice admission within 3 days of death or two or more hospitalizations or ED visits within 30 days. Weighted multivariate logistic regression analyses were used to evaluate outcomes.
RESULTS: Residents with consultations had lower rates of hospitalization than controls, with rates lowest when initial consultations were furthest from death. For instance, in residents with initial consultations 8 to 30 days before death, the adjusted hospitalization rate in the last 7 days of life was 11.1% (95% confidence interval (CI) = 9.8-12.4%), vs 22.0% (95% CI = 20.6-23.4%) in controls, although in those with initial consultations 61 to 180 days before death, rates were 6.9% (95% CI = 5.5-8.4%), vs 22.9% (95% CI = 20.5-25.4%). Potentially burdensome transition rates were lower when consultations were 61 to 180 days before death (16.2%, 95% CI = 13.7-18.6%), vs 28.2% (95% CI = 25.8-30.6%) for controls.
CONCLUSION: Palliative care consultations improve end-of-life NH care by reducing acute care use and potentially burdensome care transitions.
Department of Health Services, Policy,&Practice, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island.