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State Hospital Patients Discharged to Nursing Homes: Are Hospitals Dumping Their More Difficult Patients?
Nancy D. Dittmar; Jack L. Franklin
Psychiatric Services 1980; doi:
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Social Systems Research and Evaluation Denver Research Institute Denver, Colorado

Office of Program Analysis and Statistical Research Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation Austin, Texas

American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

In March 1978 the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation, in collaboration with the Texas Department of Health, began a large-scale follow-up and evaluation of state hospital patients placed in nursing homes. Phase one, reported here, compared the social, physical, and psychiatric functioning of a sample of almost 500 patients placed in nursing homes and a matched sample retained in the hospitals. On a large number of variables, the nursing home patients were found to be functioning significantly better at the time of placement than the patients retained in the hospitals. Thus the hospitals appear not to be dumping their more debilitated patients, and the screening processes in use in the hospitals appear to be working.

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