Background: An ageing population will increase the need for resources to treat patients with a fractured neck of femur (DRG 210/211). Provision of these resources will be helped by a better understanding of current practices.
Methods: A prospective study of outcome at discharge for 100 consecutive patients with DRG 210/211 was conducted at five Victorian metropolitan teaching hospitals to assess length of stay and the reasons for any variations.
Results: The major influences on timing of discharge were: delayed availability of rehabilitation beds; the timing of referral and assessment by the Geriatric Assessment Team; delay in surgery more than 24 h after admission; and development of postoperative complications.
Conclusion: The efficient management of patients with DRG 210/211 requires a strong protocol of treatment and referral strategies with adequate resources.