What a nurse learned from researching a community paramedicine program

Cathy Hostettler, DNP isn’t in EMS, but her indirect exposure to the industry over the years meant that teaming up with MedStar’s Mobile Integrated Healthcare program was an easy choice. The decision to do her Doctor of Nursing Practice dissertation research on MedStar’s Heart Failure Readmission Avoidance Program reflects the growing trend of collaboration across disciplines within the prehospital setting.

Hostettler ‘s retrospective research aimed to evaluate the MedStar program’s effect on readmission rates, costs of care and overall health status of enrollees who entered from October 2013 to September 2015. A total of 114 patients were originally included in the program, however 20 were unenrolled or died prior to completion and therefore were not included in subsequent analyses.

The median readmissions rate for heart failure patients across the United States is 23 percent, meaning that 22 patients in the program should have been readmitted within the first 30 days. In reality, only 18 patients were readmitted in that time frame, resulting in a rate of 19.1 percent and an almost $20,000 cost savings.

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