Abstract

In this study, a new, empirically-derived model of discharge planning for acutely-ill elderly was evaluated to determine (a) whether it could be implemented in a hospital setting, and (b) what facilitated or challenged the implementation. The process evaluation involved four case studies conducted on three in-patient units of two acute-care hospitals. Data were analyzed using explanation-building and case comparison methods. Three main study results emerged: (a) The integrated model had the potential to be implemented in a hospital setting when certain conditions were in place, (b) use of the integrated approach to discharge planning contributed to patient satisfaction, and (c) the materials developed as part of the discharging planning protocol required only minor formatting modifications in order to be rendered user-friendly. In this article, recommendations are made that will facilitate the model's implementation and utilization in other clinical settings and ongoing and future process evaluations.

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