William Altman, Kindred’s Executive Vice President for Strategy, Policy and Integrated Care, appealed to participants at Kindred’s fourth Clinical Impact Symposium, Care Transitions Across the Continuum, to share barriers they are facing at the bedside with company leadership, so that they might more effectively work toward solutions with regulators, managed care plans and partners. The 400-participant audience is made up of clinicians and managers form Kindred facilities across the nation.
Today’s healthcare environment is based predominantly on a fee-for-service model, Altman said, but that will be changing. The healthcare landscape of the future will likely be characterized by:
“This transition to future world of integrated care and integrated payment is going to be challenging,” Altman said, and there will be many conflicting messages as we collectively try to navigate it.
Kindred’s PeopleFirst Homecare and Hospice Division is now working with the company Homecare Homebase to implement their software system – HCHB and PointCare mobile; the system will become the division standard and replace traditional paper-based record-keeping. When paired with a mobile device through PointCare, HCHB allows caregivers to have access to patient information on the go.
“Our Homecare and Hospice caregivers see patients in a variety of settings, particularly in clients’ homes, and this mobile technology gives them the ability to access important patient information and input new visit data while working with patients rather than documenting after a visit is complete,” said Christa Simons, Manager of Clinical Systems Development for Kindred Healthcare. “Documenting the visit while working with the patients allows clinicians to be more efficient and accurate.”
This afternoon’s panel discussion at Kindred’s fourth Clinical Impact Symposium addressed the challenges and advances in care transitions management as they affect all four of Kindred’s divisions.
Division executive vice presidents represented the divisions: Traci Shelton from the Hospital Division; Mary Pat Welc and Jim Douthitt from RehabCare; Michael Beal from the Nursing Center Division and Jim McDonald from PeopleFirst Homecare and Hospice. Other panelists were:
Some of the challenges identified were:
While many challenges remain to be addressed as we consider ways to improve transitions of care, advances are being made. Many of these have been or will be presented at this symposium, including the Care Transitions, INTERACT and BOOST programs. Other exciting advances in the field include:
Dr. Joseph G. Ouslander
Professor and Senior Associate Dean for Geriatric Programs at Florida Atlantic University’s College of Medicine
A photo of several elderly women under hair dryers in a beauty salon flashed on the screen, followed by a photo of another elderly woman in a hospital bed.
“If you don’t manage the conditions of elderly people, they’ll end up like this", said Ouslander of the hospital photo.
Believing that “geriatrics is a team sport,” he helped develop the INTERACT program (Interventions to Reduce Acute Care Transfers).
INTERACT helps chart changes that home health aides, CNAs, dietary workers and family members have noticed in patients. The documentation can help:
Mark V. Williams, MD
Professor and Chief of the Division of Hospital Medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Details and lessons learned from Project BOOST, a Society of Hospital Medicine-sponsored program that seeks to improve the care of patients as they transition from a hospital to another facility or to home, were shared with Clinical Impact Symposium participants by project leader Mark V. Williams, MD, Professor and Chief of the Division of Hospital Medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.
Williams was an investigator on a 2011 New England Journal of Medicine study looking at rehospitalizations among patients in the Medicare fee-for-service program. The study found:
Miscommunication each time a patient is transferred between healthcare teams – from a hospital to post-discharge homes or their own home, for instance – can create more medical problems, lead to costly hospital readmissions and endanger lives.
Interspersing his passion for dealing with this problem with flashes of humor, Dr. Eric Coleman described his Care Transitions Program. Its primary goals include:
It’s based on forging partnerships by:
There are so many patient education pamphlets sent home with the patient, they could be “used as an ottoman” -- but Coleman questioned whether they are used by the patient. In the hospital, healthcare workers do things for the patient around the clock, “but then after 14 minutes of ‘education’ just before release, they go home and have to do it themselves... Imagine what it’s like to be this person with no health professional around,” he said.
“Care transitions across the continuum” is the focus of this year’s Kindred Clinical Impact Symposium, and the topic could not be more timely or important, according to Kindred’s Chief Executive Officer Paul J. Diaz, and its President and Chief Operating Officer Benjamin A. Breier, who welcomed the symposium’s 400 participants this morning.
In today’s healthcare environment, putting patients and residents in the right place at the right time is imperative, Kindred’s leadership said. Baby boomers are aging, creating a stress on the American healthcare system, and government and healthcare organizations are calling for the management of patients at a lower cost. We are seeing moves toward reducing costly readmissions to acute care hospitals, and managed care and pay-for-performance models of healthcare delivery.
Senior vice presidents of each of Kindred Healthcare’s four divisions welcomed participants this morning with reminders of why they were at the symposium in Louisville.
“It’s all about the care -- each therapist, each nurse, each dietary worker working together for patient-centered care,” said Mary Van de Kamp, Senior Vice President, Clinical Operations – RehabCare.
After 30 years in health care, Bonnie Austin, Senior Director of Compliance – PeopleFirst Homecare and Hospice, described how she had the nagging thought that “something’s just not right” in the industry because caregivers were sending patients home with instructions “that were just impossible to be carried out.” There must be a better way.
The 2012 Clinical Impact Symposium, Care Transitions Across the Continuum, is officially under way! Over the next two and a half days, we expect to hear the latest evidence-based information from some of the top experts in the nation on topics including new resources for improving patient transitions between facilities and to the home.
We’ll hear from the inventors of new initiatives to improve care transitions and they will share success stories and challenges from several markets across the country, from Las Vegas to Massachusetts. We’ll learn about interactive and new technology tools designed to make the process easier and more effective, with the goal of providing better quality care while reducing cost and rehospitalizations.
Entitlement reform is a hot topic in this election season and no matter your political position or ideas about it, for post-acute providers this brings to light the issue of payment models and the question of how long the current volume-based payment system (the current revenue model) will continue.
Entitlement reform may fail, in which case the existing fee-for-service systems will continue. It may be enacted, with implementation expected over the next decade, but with reforms for post-acute care beginning as early as five years post-enactment. Either way, payment pressures will continue; pay-for-performance and value-based purchasing models will likely be implemented; private payers will continue to move toward integrated care and integrated payment models; and single site providers will be at the greatest risk while non-institutional providers such as home care will be favored.
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