Burden and Outcomes of Fragmentation of Care in Hospitalized Patients With Inflammatory Bowel Diseases: A Nationally Representative Cohort

Inflamm Bowel Dis. 2021 Jun 15;27(7):1026-1034. doi: 10.1093/ibd/izaa238.

Nghia H Nguyen 1, Jiyu Luo 2, Lucila Ohno-Machado 3, William J Sandborn 1, Siddharth Singh 1 2


Author information

1Division of Gastroenterology, La Jolla, California.

2Division of Biostatistics and Bioinformatics, La Jolla, California.

3Division of Biomedical Informatics, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, California.


Background: Fragmentation of care (FoC) may adversely impact health care quality in patients with chronic diseases. We conducted a US nationally representative cohort study to evaluate the burden and outcomes of FoC in hospitalized patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Methods: Using Nationwide Readmissions Database 2013, we created 2 cohorts of superutilizer patients with IBD with 2 hospitalizations (cohort 1: FoC, defined as readmission to nonindex hospital vs no FoC) or 3 hospitalizations (cohort 2: multiple episodes of fragmentation vs single episode of fragmentation vs no FoC) between January and June 2013, which were followed through December 2013. We evaluated burden, pattern, and outcomes of fragmentation (6-month risk of readmission, risk of surgery, and inpatient mortality).

Results: In cohort 1, of 6073 patients with IBD with 2 admissions within 6 months, 1394 (23%) experienced FoC. Fragmentation of care was associated with modestly higher risk of readmission within 6 months (31% vs 28%, P < 0.01; adjusted relative risk, 1.11 [1.01-1.21]), without differences in risk of surgery (2.8% vs 4.3%, P = 0.19) or in-hospital mortality (0.2% vs 0.5%, P = 0.22). In cohort 2, of 1717 patients with 3 hospitalizations within 6 months, the number of patients with multiple episodes of fragmentation was associated with higher risk of readmission compared with patients with single episode of fragmentation or no FoC (52% vs 49% vs 43%, P = 0.03).

Conclusions: In a US cohort study, FoC is associated with a modestly higher risk of readmission, without higher risk of surgery or mortality in superutilizer patients with IBD. Future studies focusing on impact of outpatient care and postdischarge coordination are warranted in superutilizer patients.

© Copyright 2013-2024 GI Health Foundation. All rights reserved.
This site is maintained as an educational resource for US healthcare providers only. Use of this website is governed by the GIHF terms of use and privacy statement.