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A Randomized Trial Testing the Superiority of a Postdischarge Care Management Model for Stroke Survivors

      Objective

      We sought to evaluate whether comprehensive postdischarge care management for stroke survivors is superior to organized acute stroke department care with enhanced discharge planning in improving a profile of health and well-being.

      Methods

      This was a randomized trial of a comprehensive postdischarge care management intervention for patients with ischemic stroke and National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale scores greater than or equal to 1 discharged from an acute stroke department. An advanced practice nurse performed an in-home assessment for the intervention group from which an interdisciplinary team developed patient-specific care plans. The advanced practice nurse worked with the primary care physician and patient to implement the plan during the next 6 months. The intervention and usual care groups were compared using a global and closed hypothesis testing strategy. Outcomes fell into 5 domains: (1) neuromotor function, (2) institution time or death, (3) quality of life, (4) management of risk, and (5) stroke knowledge and lifestyle.

      Results

      Treatment effect was near 0 SD for all except the stroke knowledge and lifestyle domain, which showed a significant effect of the intervention (P = .0003).

      Conclusions

      Postdischarge care management was not more effective than organized stroke department care with enhanced discharge planning in most domains in this population. The intervention did, however, fill a postdischarge knowledge gap.

      Key Words

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