Abilene Campus (Residential)
Date of Award
Master of Science
Committee Chair or Primary Advisor
Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor
Third Committee Member or Committee Reader
Readmission rates are a primary indicator used by acute care hospitals to determine the effectiveness of healthcare treatments and interventions. High readmission rates indicate the existence of a gap in the continuum of care. Acute care hospitals focus on the treatment of the immediately urgent physical health condition. Once the immediate presenting illness is treated or stabilized, the patient is discharged. This focus largely leaves mental illness undiagnosed and untreated. However, chronic, untreated mental illnesses are often comorbid with physical illnesses. In studies comparing patients with comorbid physical and mental illness to patients with only a physical illness, comorbidity was associated with increased 30-day readmission rates. Integrated mental healthcare in acute care hospitals is likely one solution to this national problem. This research study analyzed secondary data over readmission rates within a rural Texas hospital system. A data set consisting of 1,421 total readmission cases was gathered from June 2022 to December 2022. Results showed that there are a significant number of preventable readmissions, and an improvement of integrated healthcare could help to reduce these readmissions and improve the quality of care that patients are currently receiving. It was found that although hospital administration heavily analyzes readmissions and the potential causes of them, there is very little focus on patients’ mental health diagnoses. With better prioritization on these mental health diagnoses and proper mental health intervention, many of these readmissions could be reduced.
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Shahan, Hannah M., "Reducing Readmission Rates Among Patients Who Have a Dual Diagnosis of Both Mental and Physical illnesses" (2023). Digital Commons @ ACU, Electronic Theses and Dissertations. Paper 586.