Common Acquired Hospital Complications of the Older Adult

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Hospitalization and readmission rates (“revolving door syndrome”) are extremely high among older adults. Approximately, 20% of Medicare patients are readmitted to hospitals within 30 days of being discharged, and 56% readmitted within one year of discharge. Hospitalizations among older adults disproportionately result in poor outcomes. Participate in this module to learn about five common complications experienced by hospitalized older adults—functional decline, delirium, falls, pressure injuries and adverse medication effects. This module will enable you to better understand the role of the interprofessional team in caring for hospitalized older adults and preventing complications.

Author Information

Ashish Ansal, MD
Clinical Physician
College of Medicine
Department of Family Medicine
Co-Investigator, ENGAGE-IL
University of Illinois at Chicago

Valerie Gruss PhD, APN, CNP-BC
Associate Professor
College of Nursing
Director, ENGAGE-IL
University of Illinois at Chicago

Author Bios:
Dr. Ashish Ansal, MD is a family physician with the UIC, Miles Square Healthcare System, a primary care clinic focused on treating the underserved patient population. At Miles Square, Dr. Ansal serves as the Medical Director and clinical physician. Through his leadership role at Mile Square, Dr. Ansal works to improve high quality access to healthcare for patients in the Englewood community. He also serves as an Assistant Clinical Professor for the UIC family medicine program and helps train future physicians. Dr. Ansal completed his medical school training at Ross University School of Medicine, he completed his residency from University of Illinois at Chicago.

Valerie Gruss, PhD, APN, CNP-BC, is Associate Professor in the UIC College of Nursing. She is a board-certified Nurse Practitioner with a broad range of clinical expertise and research experience working in primary care and with multidisciplinary teams in a variety of settings. Dr. Gruss’ position at UIC blends her roles as researcher, clinician and educator.
In 2015, Dr. Gruss was awarded a $2.5 million three year grant through the HRSA Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP), to create an interprofessional education program for improving the care of older adults. Dr. Gruss clinical role is as Lead Clinical Consultant on a Federal Demonstration Project for the State of Illinois, “Money Follows the Person”, which transitions eligible seniors out of nursing homes and back to the community. As an educator, Dr. Gruss teaches primary care and geriatrics in the UIC College of Nursing graduate program. In pursuit of changing current nursing education to a more interdisciplinary model, she is very involved in interprofessional education and serves on the Vice Chancellor’s IPE Steering Committee.

Memoona Hasnain MD, MHPE, PhD
Professor and Associate Department Head, Faculty Development & Research
College of Medicine,
Department of Family Medicine
Co-Director, ENGAGE-IL
University of Illinois at Chicago

Expert Interviewee:
Lalitha Dileep-Ansal, MD
Internal Medicine Hospitalist
Elmhurst Memorial Clinic

Expert Bio:
Dr. Dileep-Ansal is an internal medicine physician currently working as a Hospitalist Physician at Elmhurst Memorial Hospital. She also serves on the Antimicrobial Stewardship Committee as well as the Lab and Diagnostics Review Committee to help ensure safe utilization of antibiotics for patient treatment and appropriate patient care. She also acts as a mentor in the Urban Bridges Medical Mentoring Program – a program designed to expose underrepresented, inner city youth interested in becoming a physician.

Dr Dileep-Ansal completed her medical school training at Ross University School of Medicine, residency at West Suburban Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois.

Module Information

Duration: 30 minutes
Format: Video Stream & pdfs
CEU Value: 0.5

Module Guide and Handout
Resources & References
Continuing Education Credit Information

In support of patient care, Rush University Medical Center is accredited by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.

Rush University Medical Center designates this live activity for a maximum of (0.50) AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

This activity is being presented without bias and without commercial support.

ANCC Credit Designation – Nurses
The maximum number of hours awarded for this CE activity is 0.50 contact hours.

Rush University is an approved provider for physical therapy (216.000272), occupational therapy, respiratory therapy, social work (159.001203), nutrition, speech-audiology, and psychology by the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation. Rush University designates this live activity for (0.50) Continuing Education credit(s).

Rush University Medical Center designates this knowledge based CPE activity for 0.50 contact hours for pharmacists.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this module, learners will be able to:

List complications commonly experienced by hospitalized older adults
Identify the role that providers and the interprofessional team have in caring for hospitalized older adults and preventing complications
Identify risk factors that increase the “revolving door syndrome” and complications of hospitalizations in older adults
Identify the stages and causes of pressure injuries

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This ENGAGE-IL learning activity fully complies with the legal requirements of the ADA and the rules and regulations thereof. Learners with special needs can make requests for accommodation at any time by sending e-mail to

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