The Impact of Inpatient Palliative Care Consultations on 30-Day Hospital Readmissions

In the Journal of Palliative Medicine, Nina O’Connor, and colleagues, including David Casarett, show that palliative care consults at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania facilitate goals discussions which in turn are associated with reduced 30-day readmissions. Of the 35,541 hospitalizations included in the study, 4.1% involved a palliative care consult. After adjusting for propensity score, patients who had a consultation with a palliative care specialist had a lower 30-day readmission rate: 10.3% for palliative care versus 15.0% for usual care. Among all palliative care patients, consultations that involved goals of care discussions were associated with a lower readmission but consultations involving symptom management were not.