Patients’ unnecessary length of stay in Iran: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Document Type : Original Article


1 Tehran University of medical sciences

2 Assistant Professor of Public Health.Department of Public Health, Zabol University of Medical Sciences, Zabol, Iran.


Background and Aim: Decreasing inappropriate length of stay can improve hospital efficiency. The aim of this study was to evaluate patients’ inappropriate length of stay in Iranian hospitals.
Materials and Methods: This study was conducted using a systematic review approach. Eight electronic databases and search engines were searched using appropriate key words. Bibliography section of the retrieved papers and related journals were also searched for papers that were not yet indexed in the data bases. All retrieved papers were assessed using a valid checklist before analysis. Finally 13 empirical studies were reviewed. Data were analysed by using Comprehensive Meta-Analysis software.

Results: The overall incidence of average inappropriate length of stay of Iran hospitals was 5.4 % (95% Cl 2.4%-11.4%). The highest inappropriate length of stay was recorded in Tehran in 2015, 49% (95% Cl: 35.7%-62.5%) and the lowest inappropriate length of stay was found in Shiraz in 2010, 0.5% (95% Cl: 0.2%-1.1%). Significant statistical correlation was observed between inappropriate length of stay and year and sample size (p<0/05). Hospital, Patient demographic, and physician factors were most reasons of inappropriate length of stay in hospital, respectively.
Conclusion: the use of models, techniques and also training of employees, patients and their families can decrease inappropriate length of stay in hospital. Moreover, it has economic benefits for hospital.


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