Unmet Nursing Care Linked to Rehospitalizations Among Older Black AMI Patients: A Cross-Sectional Study of US Hospitals

In Medical Care, Margo Brooks-Carthon and colleagues, including Karen Lasater, investigate the differences in the relationship between nursing care left undone and acute myocardial infarction readmissions among older black patients compared with older white patients. Brooks-Carthon and colleagues used multiple datasets, including 2006 to 2007 administrative discharge data, a survey of registered nurses, and the American Hospital Association Annual Survey to estimate the association between care left undone, 30-day readmission, and the impact of race on this interaction. The sample included 69,065 patients from California, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Older black patients were 18% more likely to experience a readmission after adjusting for patient and hospital characteristics and more likely to be in hospitals where nursing care was often left undone. Black patients were more likely to be readmitted when nurses were unable to talk or comfort patients, complete documentation or administer medications in a timely manner. The findings suggest investing in nursing resources may decrease disparities in readmission.