Case management is an innovative way to simultaneously modify healthcare delivery, uphold standards of care, and reduce healthcare costs. The case manager oversees the patient's condition, progress, and consumption of resources. Information is constantly analyzed and used to regulate treatment plans in accordance with the critical pathways. The goal of this regulation is to produce outcomes that serve the patient and the healthcare system. The complexity of individualized patient care can require an unlimited number of pathways if all variances are considered. If all variances are not considered, then the quality of care is hindered, rehospitalization occurs, and the goals of the critical pathways are not achieved. Therefore, effective use of case management and critical pathways involves flexible guidelines, maintains focus on outcomes, enhances efficiency, increases cost-effectiveness, and retains a high quality of patient care.
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LM Kegel; Case management, critical pathways, and myocardial infarction. Crit Care Nurse 1 April 1996; 16 (2): 97–104. doi: https://doi.org/10.4037/ccn19126.96.36.199
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