Enhancing Care for Hospitalized Older Adults with Cognitive Impairment: A Randomized Controlled Trial
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Approximately 40% of hospitalized older adults have cognitive impairment (CI) and are more prone to hospital-acquired complications. The Institute of Medicine suggests using health information technology to improve the overall safety and quality of the health care system.
Evaluate the efficacy of a clinical decision support system (CDSS) to improve the quality of care for hospitalized older adults with CI.
A randomized controlled clinical trial.
A public hospital in Indianapolis.
A total of 998 hospitalized older adults were screened for CI, and 424 patients (225 intervention, 199 control) with CI were enrolled in the trial with a mean age of 74.8, 59% African Americans, and 68% female.
A CDSS alerts the physicians of the presence of CI, recommends early referral into a geriatric consult, and suggests discontinuation of the use of Foley catheterization, physical restraints, and anticholinergic drugs.
Orders of a geriatric consult and discontinuation orders of Foley catheterization, physical restraints, or anticholinergic drugs.
Using intent-to-treat analyses, there were no differences between the intervention and the control groups in geriatric consult orders (56% vs 49%, P = 0.21); discontinuation orders for Foley catheterization (61.7% vs 64.6%, P = 0.86); physical restraints (4.8% vs 0%, P = 0.86), or anticholinergic drugs (48.9% vs 31.2%, P = 0.11).
A simple screening program for CI followed by a CDSS did not change physician prescribing behaviors or improve the process of care for hospitalized older adults with CI.
KEY WORDScognitive impairment clinical trial decision support hospitalized elders
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