An exploration of being ‘discharge-ready’ from sub-acute care from the perspectives of all stakeholders: A qualitative study

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting Abstractpeer-review


Introduction/Rationale: In Australia, ageing populations and an increase in readmission rates place increased pressure on the health-care system. Reduced lengths of stays and more care being provided in ambulatory settings make effective discharges essential. Yet, most research in this area focuses on acute care and clinicians ’perspectives only.

Objectives: The aim of this study was to explore the definition of ‘discharge-ready’ from sub-acute care from the perspectives of all stakeholders.

Methods: This qualitative descriptive study collected data via focus groups and semi-structured interviews with four participant groups: managers, clinicians, family members and patients. Data were analysed thematically.

Results: 61 people participated in this study: clinicians (n = 17), managers (n = 12), family members (n = 16) and patients (n = 16). Discharge-planning was found to be a complex interaction of three themes: environmental factors, patients’ personal factors and organisational factors. Environmental factors include physical and social environments. Key personal factors for patients to be discharge-ready are functional mobility, continence, cognition, pain and medication management. Organisational factors such as regular communication, patient and family engagement, intra and interdisciplinary engagement and shared expectations from all stakeholders are essential for discharge-readiness.

Conclusion: This study identified key concepts that can be used to streamline discharge-planning processes from sub-acute care from the perspectives of all stakeholders. This study’s outcomes assist in providing strategies that may reduce high costs of hospital readmissions, and result in saving costs for the Australian health-care system.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18
Number of pages1
JournalAustralian Occupational Therapy Journal
Issue numberS1
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021
EventOccupational Therapy Australia National Conference and Exhibition 2021 - Virtual, Australia
Duration: 23 Jun 202125 Jun 2021
Conference number: 29th (link to Vol 68 S1 of the Australian Occupational Therapy Journal published abstract from the conference)

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