Does case management reduce the rehospitalization rate?

Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica
W RösslerA Riecher-Rössler

Abstract

It was expected from deinstitutionalization that outpatient care could replace hospital care. But many empirical studies proved that the number of admissions to psychiatric hospitals rose when community-based care developed. This might be due to the lack of coordination and cooperation of extramural services. The concept of case management therefore originated in the last few years. In this study the effect of case management on the rehospitalization rate is examined by analyzing the data of 4 social-psychiatric services responsible for defined catchment areas. During the evaluation period of 2.5 years, 162 patients dismissed from psychiatric hospitals were referred to those services. For each of these index patients a matched control patient was identified, each identical in diagnosis, sex, age, living conditions and number of previous inpatient episodes. The results of a survival analysis show that there are no significant effects of case management on the rate of rehospitalization nor on the length of time in hospital in case of a rehospitalization.

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