First of all, during the 2013 Case Management Week it is time to express our collective thanks to all our Kindred case managers and show appreciation for their daily dedication, persistence, advocacy and hard work in the care of our complex patients. The empathy that is shown every single day to our patients and families makes a tremendous difference in their lives as they go through their difficult hospital experiences. This week of heightened public awareness also gives us (as case managers) a chance to boost knowledge and share the value of a case manager’s role.
In recognition of Case Management Week, I’d like to take the opportunity to thank the case managers I work with in my three Kindred Hospitals – Town and Country, Tomball and Central Ohio. I’m a medical records coder working from home, and case managers are integral to the job I do each day, and I couldn’t do it as well without them. They are my eyes and ears at my hospitals.
As a coder, I’m responsible for assigning codes to our patients’ diagnoses and procedures, for reimbursement and disease tracking purposes. As all Kindred Hospital coding specialists do, I work from my home. I make a Starbucks run each day – can’t get through without it – but aside from that little jaunt, I’m holed up in my home office with my fur babies, coding full time for two Houston hospitals and one in Ohio. I love my job, and part of what makes it so enjoyable is the strong working relationships I have with the case managers at my hospitals.
I once heard a quote from Confucius, and it has stuck with me throughout my career as a case manager at Kindred: “The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential…these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence.” I tweaked it a little, as people sometimes do, so it really applied to my own life; that desire to succeed is not only for me personally, but also on behalf of the patients I work with each day.
With relationships with payors becoming ever-more important and a new focus on a patient's entire "episode of care," smaller hospitals are merging with larger systems with more frequency, but new issues can arise when a parent hospital is located in a different region or even state. Read the story
A boom in health care clinics inside stores, as well as urgent care centers, has been a result of the the Affordable Care Act's emphasis on less expensive, outpatient care. Dubbed the "Walk-in Clinic Revolution," this phenomenon will be a focus during the Forbes Healthcare Summit, held in New York City this week. Read the story
In places where a trickle of customers was expected, a flood often appeared, in the early days of the online health insurance marketplaces. Technology was hard-pressed to keep up. Read the story
When 37-year-old Kelly Downing came to Kindred Transitional Care and Rehabilitation – Greenbriar, paralyzed from the neck down as a result of chronic Lyme disease, she was unlike any patient the team had ever seen.
Her occupational therapist, Stacey Irek, has said: “With her diagnosis, there was no textbook we could follow.”
The only one that might come close, they thought, was another Kelly, who had a neurological condition that had also caused neck-down paralysis, and who had been treated at Kindred Rehabilitation Hospital Clear Lake in Webster, Texas.
“Our Kelly’s brother had seen the video on YouTube about Kelly Ford – the so-called ‘Running Mom’ who had lost the ability to walk, paralyzed from the neck down,” Stacey said. “He noted the similarities and they asked us about it.”
We are excited that one of our patient success stories is getting national media attention. Kelly Downing’s inspirational recovery will be profiled tomorrow, October 9, on Katie Couric’s talk show.
For those of you not familiar with Kelly’s story, she is a 37-year-old mother who, as a result of Chronic Lyme Disease, experienced full paralysis from the neck down. Because of the clinical and intense rehabilitative interventions provided by our rehabilitation division, RehabCare at Kindred Transitional Care and Rehabilitation – Greenbriar, in Nashua, NH, she was able to regain her strength and abilities and return home to her husband, young children and active lifestyle – something she didn’t think possible before her stay at Greenbriar.
Watch Kelly’s story:
In an animal study, researchers have uncovered two gene mutations that play a critical role in the development of Alzheimer's disease, and the findings may lay the groundwork for better treatment and preventive efforts in humans.
A new study has found that above many other factors, dining services play a big role in resident satisfaction with senior living facilities. Mealtime was more important, according to the study, than apartment and facility characteristics. Read the story
A new program is helping hospitalized seniors understand post-acute options and make choices. The goals are to improve outcomes and reduce costs. Read the story
According to a new report, dementia plays a large and important role in dependence, and as such, it needs more attention from governments, say the report's authors. Read the story
When someone suffers a traumatic brain trauma — whether it’s from an automobile accident, severe stroke or other injury — he or she is initially admitted to an Intensive Care Unit. After patients are medically stable, it may be necessary to transfer them to a long-term acute care or transitional care facility before an acute rehabilitation or subacute rehabilitation facility.
According to Terry Eberly, a speech pathologist at Kindred Hospital Denver, two assessment methods are used to determine the extent of the injury and issues that need to be addressed:
Based on the results of the evaluation, a plan is customized to the needs of the individual, encompassing and integrating therapies to treat respiratory, speech, motor, visual, orthopedic and other identified issues.
After several years of anticipation and a great deal of confusion over the Affordable Care Act, today marks the day that the insurance marketplaces – otherwise known as exchanges – begin enrollment for individuals not covered by employer insurance benefits.
In recent days and weeks, there has been additional confusion about what this all means with debates about defunding healthcare reform on Capitol Hill and the most recent shutdown of the federal government. So, we want to explain what this all means for you.
First of all, neither the current back and forth in Congress or the temporary government shutdown over the budget will impact the insurance exchanges. As the U.S. Department for Health and Human Services (HHS) announced this morning, “the marketplace is open for business.”
So what does it mean?
My first few months at Kindred have been a flurry of activity and somewhat of a blur. I have learned much about our organization, but there is clearly a great deal more for me to learn. In order to do so, I will focus on listening and gaining knowledge from my great colleagues throughout our enterprise. We have great people – and I will rely on them to be my teachers!
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