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Early discharge of respiratory failure patients to Kindred Hospitals can help improve outcomes, decrease inpatient length of stay, and reduce readmissions.

The Respiratory Failure Challenge

Respiratory failure is a potentially fatal condition that often has a complex recovery path.

The average length of stay for patients with respiratory failure requiring mechanical ventilation is 10.5 days, and the mean 30-day readmission rate for respiratory failure is 21%.1,2

Recovery Outcomes at Kindred Hospitals

Kindred Hospitals, which provide physician-led acute care and rehabilitation for medically complex patients after a hospital stay, have been able to achieve quality outcomes and reduce readmissions for respiratory failure patients. With a specialized focus and key initiatives, Kindred Hospitals have achieved the following:

  • 86% of ventilator patients reach a high level of mobility, based on the Johns Hopkins Highest Level of Mobility Scale.3
  • 14% readmission rate for respiratory failure and ventilator-supported pulmonary diagnoses, compared with the average readmission rate of 22% at inpatient facilities and 27% at skilled nursing facilities.4

Initiatives that have contributed to Kindred Hospitals’ quality outcomes include:

  • Disease-specific certifications from The Joint Commission in Respiratory Failure*
  • Move Early program that incorporates movement into the patient recovery plan as soon as is safe, even for patients on mechanical ventilation
  • AfterCare program of follow-up communications with patients post-discharge to answer questions about discharge orders, medications, and durable medical equipment

Length of Stay and Cost Implications of Early Discharge to Kindred

Because our specialized hospitals offer ICU-level care, stable patients can be transferred to a Kindred Hospital while they are still in critical condition, shortening their inpatient lengths of stay.

Considering the average cost of an initial inpatient stay for respiratory failure patients on mechanical ventilation is $158,443, such strategies to shorten length of stay can have a significant financial impact on hospitals.5

Therefore, early transfer of respiratory failure patients to Kindred Hospitals can both improve outcomes and reduce costs.

To learn more about how Kindred Hospitals can help your respiratory failure patients recover, visit




3. Kindred Internal Data, 2022 Average;; “high level of mobility” defined as a score of 4 or better.

4. The Advisory Board. Post-Acute Pathways Explorer: State Average Outcomes by MS-DRG; Systems Outcomes Report, Kindred IDs; DRGs

3, 4, 189, 207, 208; Q3 2022-Q2 2023


*In select locations

By Dr. Dean French, MD, CPPS