Early supported discharge after stroke and continued rehabilitation at home coordinated and delivered by a
stroke unit in an urban area
Hélène Pessah-Rasmussen, Kerstin Wendel
Objective: To explore the characteristics and outcome of patients after stroke admitted to early supported discharge (ESD) services, and to investigate changes over time.
Study populations: Patients admitted between June 1997 and September 1998 and participating in a follow-up study (n = 87) and all patients admitted in 2005–06 (n = 226).
Background populations: All stroke cases in Malmö alive 3 months after stroke in June 1997 to September 1998 (n = 514) and 2005–06 (n = 1353).
Results: There were no differences in age, gender, proportion living alone or Katz Index distribution between the 2 study populations. The Katz Index improved between start and end of ESD (p < 0.001). Patients admitted to ESD services did not differ from the background populations with regard to gender or age, but were less often living alone in 2005–06 (p = 0.002). The mean duration of the ESD input was shorter in 2005–06 (p < 0.001). In 1997–98 the participants were satisfied with most of the dimensions of care; the proportion of patients having activity limitations decreased during the first 6 months after stroke.
Conclusion: The use of ESD was feasible in the routine setting of an urban stroke unit. The input of the ESD services per patient decreased over time, perhaps indicating an improvement in use of healthcare resources.
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