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Relationship between timeliness of contact and length of stay in older and younger patients of a consultation-liaison psychiatry service

  • Rebecca Wood (a1) (a2), Anne P. F. Wand (a2) (a3) (a4) and Glenn E. Hunt (a1) (a2)

Abstract

Aim and methods

The aims were to determine whether the timeliness of contact with a consultation–liaison psychiatry (CLP) service is associated with shorter lengths of stay (LOS), whether this relationship persists for stays greater than 4 days and whether this association varies with age. The length of stay was correlated with the time from admission to contact with the service (the referral lag (REFLAG)), and the REFLAG's proportion of length of stay (REFLAG/LOS) for all 140 in-patients, those with stays greater than 4 days, and for those under and over 65 years.

Results

The length of stay was significantly correlated with referral lag and logREFLAG/logLOS for all patients and for patients with stays greater than 4 days. The correlations remained significant for both age groups, but were stronger in the younger group.

Clinical implications

Timeliness of contact with CLP was associated with shorter length of stay, particularly in younger patients. Psychiatric factors influencing length of stay in older patients should be studied by CLP services.

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Copyright

This is an open-access article published by the Royal College of Psychiatrists and distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Rebecca Wood (rebecca.wood@sydney.edu.au)

Footnotes

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Declaration of interest

None.

Footnotes

References

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Relationship between timeliness of contact and length of stay in older and younger patients of a consultation-liaison psychiatry service

  • Rebecca Wood (a1) (a2), Anne P. F. Wand (a2) (a3) (a4) and Glenn E. Hunt (a1) (a2)
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