Quality and Safety

Hip and Knee Readmission Rates

Many patients who need joint replacement surgery want to know a hospital's readmission rate when choosing where to have their procedure done.  (“Readmission rate” measures unplanned readmissions, both related and unrelated to the procedure, following elective hip or knee replacement within 30 days of being discharged from the hospital).

Readmission occurs for a variety of reasons.  While some patients are more likely to have a complication than others, some readmissions may be preventable. Patients may return to a hospital because of infection, procedure complications such as hip dislocation, a blood clot in the lung, or ineffective pain management.  By also measuring readmissions unrelated to the procedure it is anticipated that hospitals will  improve other processes known to reduce readmission such as communication between the hospital  and aftercare providers, and comprehensive discharge  planning and medication education.

HSS's unparalleled experience in joint surgery lessens the likelihood of a preventable readmission.  This includes surgical skill and expertise in pain management.  We have comprehensive care pathways for each type of surgery. Medical staff, nursing, physical therapy and pain and case management all work together to provide thorough and highly coordinated care in the hospital and through the transition to rehabilitation or home. Transitional care is an important factor in timeliness and quality of patient outcomes. We have educated many of our aftercare providers on our protocols to assure progress toward recovery goals.

Chart - Unplanned readmission rates: national average 4.6%; HSS - 3.3%

HSS performed significantly better than the national average
Source: Hospital Compare. Data collected July 1, 2012 - June 30, 2015

Our actual readmission rate is much lower than what would be expected given our patients' risk for readmission. This is an important consideration in deciding where to receive care.  In fact, we are among just 51 hospitals nationwide with a lower than expected hip/knee readmission rate and 1 of only 3 hospitals in New York State with a hip/knee readmission rate statistically lower than the U.S. national rate.