Letters Section Editor: Stephen J. Lurie,
MD, PhD, Senior Editor.
In Reply: Dr Riegel and colleagues are concerned
about the categorization of studies in our meta-analysis. We agree that it
is appealing to use concepts of intensity and complexity to categorize components
of multidisciplinary interventions for congestive heart failure, such as specific
education to enhance self-care behavior, discharge planning, and support after
In our meta-analysis of published data, we categorized studies according
to the reported characteristics of postdischarge support. This aspect of the
intervention has an impact on both the intensity and complexity of the process
of care and was specifically described in the published reports, which contained
little additional information about the intensity of other components. Therefore,
we chose postdischarge support as the basis for our categorization scheme.
Phillips CO, Wright SM, Kern DE, Rubin HR, Shepperd S. Interventions to Prevent Readmission for Congestive Heart Failure—Reply. JAMA. 2004;291(23):2816. doi:10.1001/jama.291.23.2816-b