Understanding those who seek frequent psychiatric hospitalizations
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In the period after deinstitutionalization, there has been a rise in hospital readmission rates. It is estimated that the readmission rate for individuals who are frequent users of psychiatric inpatient services is approximately 40% to 50% within 1 year of hospital discharge. Attempts to determine predictors of recidivism have identified multiple variables, some of which are mutually contradictory. Furthermore, comparison among studies is difficult given methodological and theoretical limitations. Despite such issues, however, one consistent predictor of frequent rehospitalization is a person's history of past psychiatric hospital admissions. It seems that those who have shown a pattern of seeking inpatient services in the past tend to repeat this treatment-seeking behavior. The aim of this report is to critically examine some of the predictors of rehospitalization. A better understanding of those who engage in the persistent pattern of seeking inpatient services may assist nurses in planning care that is more suited for their needs.
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