• Healthcare Headlines - February 2016

    By Kindred Healthcare

    HCH Monthly

    AHA Urges Congress to Remove Legal Barriers to Value-Based Payment Arrangements

    Congress should adopt a single broad exception to federal fraud and abuse laws for financial relationships designed to foster collaboration, efficiencies and improvements in health care, AHA told leaders of the Senate Finance and House Ways and Means committees today. Read More   

    How a New Payment Stream Could Come to Senior Care

    As baby boomers age over the next several decades, the demand for senior care options will increase-and there currently are limited ways for middle-income earners to pay for these services. Read More  

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  • What Can we do About Burnout Among Palliative Care Doctors?

    By Dianne Halderman, AVP, Clinical Operations, Kindred at Home

    Results of a recent study showed that burnout among palliative care physicians – those who focus on pain and symptom relief among patients with various diseases and conditions – is extraordinarily high: over 62 percent. The study, which relied on a survey of over 1,200 hospice and palliative care clinicians, also found that 50 percent of palliative care physicians expect to leave the field in the next 10 years. Severity of the burnout seemed to be affected by younger age, having fewer colleagues and working weekends.

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  • What You Need to Know about Advance Directives

    By Kindred Healthcare

    Advance Directives, or Living Wills, allow you to document your wishes for end-of-life medical care. In the event that you become incapacitated and unable to express your wishes, Living Wills guide your loved ones and medical professionals involved in your care when important decisions about life-sustaining treatment must be made.

    Patients are asked if they have Advance Directives when they are admitted to a Kindred facility, said Kathee Paradowski, Clinical Informaticist Consultant in Kindred’s Hospital Division.

    “The goal of an Advance Directive is to make sure that patients are making informed decisions and that we’re following their wishes,” Ms. Paradowski said.

    Once the patient’s wishes have been determined, the physician writes orders based on the patient’s desires and the Advance Directives are entered into the patient’s record.

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  • Chronically critically ill patients, a population whose needs and challenges were the sole subject of a recent issue of the journal Respiratory Care, have a very high mortality rate, and survivors among the group suffer with severe impairments and functional dependence. For the caregivers of these patients, the effect can be devastating. According to one article in the journal, “it is difficult to imagine a group of patients with greater need for high-quality palliative care.”

     Graphic depicting the spectrum of palliative care as seen in http://www.slideshare.net/Kindredhealth/palliative-care-across-the-continuum Graphic depicting the spectrum of palliative care as seen in http://www.slideshare.net/Kindredhealth/palliative-care-across-the-continuum

    This article points out that early integration of palliative care for these patients can be highly beneficial, particularly in helping patients and families define goals for care and manage the emotional issues that arise when a patient is chronically critically ill.

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