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Medline (1996–2003), CINAHL (1982–2003), HealthSTAR (1975–2003), bibliographies of relevant reviews, and content experts.
Study selection and assessment:
randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that assessed the effects of hospital based case management on length of stay or readmission rate in inpatients ⩾18 years of age. Studies of patients with mental illness, outpatient services, or hospital-to-community based or community based case management were excluded. Methodological quality of individual studies was assessed using the 5 point Jadad scale; intervention quality was assessed based on the presence of 6 components: comprehensive assessment, education/consultation, collaboration, discharge planning, linkage with community, and …
For correspondence: MsY J Kim, School of Nursing, University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD, USA.
Source of funding: no external funding.