Study: Hospital-Associated Infections Tied to Increased Readmission Risk

Patients with healthcare-associated infections have a higher risk of being readmitted to a hospital after discharge compared with patients without an infection, according to a study in Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology.

Researchers studied adult patients admitted to an academic, tertiary care referral center from Jan. 1, 2001 to Dec. 31, 2008. They focused on patients with a clinical culture positive for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, vancomycin-resistant enterococci or Clostridium difficile acquired more than 48 hours after hospital admission. They analyzed the association between these infections and the time to readmission.

Results showed 25 percent of patients who acquired one of the three infections more than 48 hours after admission were readmitted within 30 days compared with 15 percent of patients without an infection. In addition, the time to readmission was shorter for patients with an infection: Median time to readmission was 27 days for patients with an infection compared with 59 days for patients without an infection.

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