There is no denying that healthcare reform continues to be on everyone’s minds these days. The industry is moving towards a value-based purchasing system that seeks reimbursement linked to performance. One of the main areas that reform will be concerned with is quality outcomes; this means that providers will be rewarded for clinical outcomes and the demonstrated functional improvement of patients. Providers must be fully prepared to show they’re providing the highest level of quality outcomes at the lowest cost.

Outcomes are important to provide data and knowledge that support quality improvement, and to provide data for evidence-based practice.

The new healthcare reform mandates will impact all providers from short-term acute care hospitals to skilled nursing services. Post-acute care is an important part of the evolving healthcare marketplace. A focus on quality clinical outcomes is paramount to succeeding in this changing environment.

“At Kindred, we are passionate about outcomes and use this information to examine our performance. We look at outcomes from the patient level to the division level and across the enterprise. Companies can talk all day long about the wonderful job they’re doing, but it’s their outcomes data that proves if what they’re saying is true,” says Debra Boeving, Director of Business Development, Kindred Nursing Center Division.

Boeving says that Kindred strives to be transparent, delve deeper and share its findings with patients, families, providers and the overall community in order to create strong relationships built on trust. Kindred also partners with its referral sources to proactively determine what type of care their patients may need. And it works to provide staff with the knowledge and skills needed to care for those patients.

Kindred gathers information on items such as the length of stay by diagnosis, rates of discharge to home, and how successful the care team was in helping patients achieve their goals. These goals are specific to each patient’s needs, and patients express these goals in ways that matter to them, such as being able to walk to their mailbox without becoming short of breath.

Boeving says patients and their families can visit the website of a Kindred facility for information about their outcomes, but adds that it’s also important to visit in person and gather information from various sources when evaluating a nursing or rehabilitation facility.

Boeving adds, “Kindred is superior in the post-acute environment when it comes to tracking and reporting outcomes. Patient and family satisfaction is vital to our success.”