Direct home discharge (DHD) following hip fracture surgery represents a challenging proposition. The aim of this study was to identify factors influencing the discharge destination (home vs alternative location) for patients admitted from their own home with a fractured neck of femur.METHODS
A retrospective cohort study of prospectively collected major trauma centre data was performed, identifying 10,044 consecutive hip fracture admissions between 2000 and 2012.RESULTS
Two-thirds of the patients (n=6,742, 67%) were admitted from their own home. Half of these (n=3,509, 52%) returned directly to their own home while two-fifths (n=2,640, 39%) were discharged to an alternative location; 593 (9%) died. The following were identified as independent variables associated with a higher likelihood of DHD: younger patients, female sex, an abbreviated mental test score of 10, absence of certain co-morbidities, cohabiting, walking independently outdoors, no use of walking aids, no assistance required with basic activities of daily living and intracapsular fracture.CONCLUSIONS
Identifying those at risk of being discharged to an alternative location following admission from home on the basis of identified preoperative indices could assist in streamlining the postoperative care phase. Pre-emptive action may help increase the numbers of patients discharged directly home and reduce the number requiring additional rehabilitation prior to discharge home with its associated socioeconomic effect.