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Use of Feeding Tubes

Published on April 20th, 2010

The Dallas Morning News had an article about a new study that proves that feeding tubes in nursing-home patients with advanced dementia are used in for profit facilities more often than government-owned hospitals.  The feeding tube is used whether it helps the patients live longer or not, the researchers from Brown and Harvard universities say.

Researchers analyzed more than a quarter-million admissions at thousands of acute-care hospitals from 2000 to 2007. Feeding tubes were used far less frequently at smaller, rural hospitals not affiliated with medical schools. Decisions are based more on hospital practices than on patients’ or families’ wishes, says lead study author Dr. Joan M. Teno, from Brown University’s medical school.

The results were published Feb. 10 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
 

Feeding tubes generally save nursing homes time and money.  It is another way that the industry places profits over the best interest of their residents.

Joe Pioletti
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