Am Surg. 2023 May 19:31348231177914. doi: 10.1177/00031348231177914. Online ahead of print.
Our health system introduced an enteral access clinical pathway (EACP) hoping to increase nutritionist consults and decrease presentation to the Emergency Department, readmission to the hospital, and overall hospital length of stay. We followed patients with short-term access (STA), longterm access (LTA), and short-long-term conversions (SLT) seen in the six months prior to the EACP launch (baseline group) and the six months after (performance group). The baseline cohort consisted of 2,553 patients and the performance cohort of 2,419 patients. Those in the performance group were more likely to receive a nutrition consult (52.4% vs 48.0%, P < .01), less likely to re-present to the ED (31.9% vs 42.6%, P < .001), and less likely to be readmitted to the hospital (31.0% vs 41.6%, P < .001. These findings suggest that the EACP may increase the likelihood of both expert-driven nutritional support and effective discharge planning for hospitalized patients.