Men are more likely to need urgent hospital care again soon after discharge, US researchers have found.
Researchers tracked 367 men and 370 women who attended Boston Medical Centre for a month after they had been discharged.
They found a return rate of 29 per every 100 women compared to 47 per 100 men, mainly because men were twice as likely to turn up at emergency departments.
Men were 72 per cent more likely to need hospital care within 30 days of discharge if they were unmarried or retired and were 53 per cent more likely to need hospital care again if they suffered from depression.
The study – published in the online journal BMJ Open - concluded tackling “social isolation” among men could be key in helping reduce hospital readmission rates.
Other factors that could explain the gender difference include the fact women were often better at using health services and more likely to be registered with a family doctor while men “may delay accessing care when it is needed”.
“Lower rates of connectedness to primary care among men may also contribute to their excess use of hospital services,” said the paper.