What patients & caregivers value most during care transitions

Boston Medical Center researchers examined the care transition values that are most important to patients and caregivers. They published their findings in the Annals of Family Medicine.

Researchers conducted a qualitative study involving interviews with 248 patients and caregivers individually and in groups across six U.S. medical centers. The interviewees had been discharged from a medical setting in the previous 90 days.

They found accountability, care continuity and caring attitudes were the most important care transition values for patients and caregivers. When these three values were present, patients and caregivers perceived care as excellent. However, in the absence of these values, patients and caregivers viewed care as unsafe or transactional.

"Health systems must learn how to better prepare patients and caregivers for care at home and design accessible channels for ongoing support in order to ensure the journey from hospital to home is safe and supports each person's recovery," said Suzanne Mitchell, MD, a family medicine and palliative care physician at BMC and lead study author.

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