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Revista médica de Chile

Print version ISSN 0034-9887


EYMIN, Gonzalo; AIZMAN, Andrés; LOPETEGUI, Marcelo  and  MANJARREZ, Efren. The discharge process. Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2014, vol.142, n.2, pp.229-237. ISSN 0034-9887.

Discharge is one of the most important processes that hospitalized patients must endure. This process is complex, requires coordination among several professionals and transfers an overwhelming amount of information to patients. Often, it is limited to the writing of the discharge summary, with a primary emphasis on the drug list. Since the rise of hospitalism in 1996, a greater emphasis has been placed on understanding this process and in developing interventions to make it more effective and safe. In our country, little is known about how this process is taking place. Probably the absence of financial penalties for readmissions has influenced in the lack of study and development of this process. In the USA the knowledge of the discharge process is well advanced, and several strategies have been developed for reducing adverse events, medication errors, and 30-days readmissions. Other interventions have increased patient satisfaction and the degree of knowledge about their conditions. The aim of this paper is to do a comprehensive review of the literature, to provide healthcare teams with various tools that could improve both the discharge process as well as the discharge summary. The final objective is to optimize the safety and satisfaction of our patients and the hospital metrics of quality.

Keywords : Length of stay; Patient discharge; Patient readmission; Quality assurance, healthcare.

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