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MANY PATIENTS TODAY go through surgical procedures in a 1 day/same-day/ambulatory surgery setting. The shift from inpatient care to caring for patients in their own homes after discharge places countless demands on patients and their families during recovery. Patients and families often mistake same-day surgery for same-day recovery and underestimate needs they may have upon discharge. In a sample of patients undergoing joint procedures, approximately 38% were discharged directly to home care postprocedure and more than 50% went to some type of facility before being discharged to home care. With trends moving toward more outpatient surgical procedures, and with the increasing number of elderly patients, referrals from ambulatory surgery to home care will likely grow as well. This article describes the literature related to challenges and key practice issues nurses face when transitioning patients to skilled home care after ambulatory surgery, as well as evidence-based interventions to reduce these issues.


Lahr, J., & Elliott, B. (2018). Perspectives from home care for guiding patients and families to a successful transition home after same-day surgery. Journal of PeriAnesthesia Nursing, 33(3), 348–352.

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