Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

Health Services Research & Development

Go to the ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Hospital Distance and Readmissions Among VA-Medicare Dual-Enrolled Veterans.

Wong ES, Rinne ST, Hebert PL, Cook MA, Liu CF. Hospital Distance and Readmissions Among VA-Medicare Dual-Enrolled Veterans. The Journal of rural health : official journal of the American Rural Health Association and the National Rural Health Care Association. 2016 Sep 1; 32(4):377-386.

Related HSR&D Project(s)

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information vaww.hsrd.research.va.gov/dimensions/

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions



Abstract:

PURPOSE: Geographic access to inpatient care at the Veterans Affairs (VA) Health Care System is challenging for many veterans with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) given relatively few VA hospitals nationwide. Veterans with lengthy travel distances may obtain non-VA care, particularly those dually enrolled in Medicare. Our primary objective was to assess whether distance from VA patients' residence to the nearest VA and non-VA hospitals was associated with 30-day all-cause readmission and the system where patients were readmitted (VA or Medicare). METHODS: Using VA and Medicare administrative data, we identified 21,273 patients hospitalized for COPD between October 2008 and September 2011 and dually enrolled in VA and fee-for-service Medicare. Outcome variables were dichotomous measures denoting readmission for any cause within 30 days following discharge and whether the readmission occurred in a non-VA hospital through Medicare. Distance to the nearest hospital was defined as the number of miles between patients' residence ZIP code and the ZIP code of the nearest VA and non-VA hospital accepting Medicare, respectively. Probit models with sample selection were applied to examine the relationship between hospital distance and outcome measures. FINDINGS: Respective distances to the nearest VA and non-VA hospital were not associated with 30-day all-cause readmission. Greater distance to the nearest VA hospital was associated with a greater conditional probability of choosing non-VA hospitals for readmission. CONCLUSIONS: COPD patients with poor geographic access to VA hospitals did not forgo subsequent inpatient care following their index hospitalization, but they were more likely to seek non-VA substitutes.





Questions about the HSR&D website? Email the Web Team.

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.