Tag Archives: hospitals
December 18th, 2013 | 0
Searching for Senior Care for yourself or a loved one can be a very difficult task and more often than not is during a difficult period of time. It is extremely important to find the perfect fit with comfort, care and most importantly safety in mind. That said, it is critical to consider all the options that are available as well as the specific level of care and services they provide.
Below you will find a graphic that helps visualize all the key care types available. As you move from the bottom of the graphic to the top the level of care increases. Non medical home care provides the most basic form of care services in the comfort of ones home. On the other side of the spectrum is a hospital which provides the highest level of services and care for a loved one.Continue Reading
February 22nd, 2013 | 0
Health care is a hot topic, and hospitals must pay increasing attention to something called the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS). Pronounced H-Caps, this assessment is given to random eligible patients after they are discharged, and the patients’ responses are used to establish ratings for the hospitals. These ratings are released to the public four times a year.
The HCAHPS Requirement
In 2002, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) began working with the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) to create and test the survey before it went into public use. Both agencies are in the federal Department of Health and Human Services.Continue Reading
January 9th, 2013 | 0
The nation’s hospitals are now officially on notice that the federal government is looking closely at the kind of care they give—so closely that Medicare will be giving them a financial bonus or a penalty depending on the job they do. At the end of the year, Medicare announced that some 1,500 hospitals received bonuses while about 1,400 got payment reductions. For hospitals treating a lot of Medicare patients, that can mean big bucks for the bottom line, either way.
In the hope of spurring better care—and maybe reducing costs—the Affordable Care Act requires Medicare to judge the quality of care they deliver using measures of care for mostly heart and pneumonia patients, ratings of patient experience, and tracking if patients are readmitted after 30 days. Health experts regard these costly readmissions as preventable failures that occurred somewhere in the chain of care.Continue Reading
December 7th, 2012 | 0
Doctors and hospitals have certain obligations to provide competent care to patients. This duty of care does not end at the hospital doors. When a patient is discharged, the hospital/healthcare provider has a responsibility to ensure that any discharge plan is made in the best interests of the patient and takes into account the medical needs of the patient. Everyone, from the treating physician to the discharge planner, must take certain steps to ensure that the goals of providing competent care are met even once the patient has left.Continue Reading
November 27th, 2012 | 0
Earlier this month, we offered some Strategies to Reduce Readmission and got a very positive response from readers. So, we’ve decided to expand on our tips and strategies and to provide some specific advice for lowering readmission strategies when releasing patients into specific post-hospital environments. Since so many patients go to long-term care (LTC) facilities after leaving the hospital, we’ll be starting with some tips to reduce readmissions when patients are released into a long-term care situation.
Tips for Reducing Readmissions from Long Term Care
Long-term care facilities are staffed by medical professionals so in many ways it should be easier to avoid readmission when a patient is released to a facility rather than sent home. Unfortunately, due to a variety of problems including inadequate communication with long-term care facilities; choosing the incorrect facility; and overstaffed and underperforming long-term care providers, readmission rates still remain stubbornly high. In fact, according to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, approximately ¼ of Medicare beneficiaries discharged into a skilled nursing home were readmitted to hospitals within 30 days, at a cost of $4.34 billion.Continue Reading
November 15th, 2012 | 2
Higher-quality patient care at the hospital has historically been thought to reduce the possibility that the same patient will be readmitted within 30 days’ time. However, according to a recent study, it appears that this may not be the case. A more effective approach to readmission data may be the development of care guidelines for those suffering from different illnesses – for example, distinguishing between heart attacks, heart failure, and instances of pneumonia.
The following data was compiled from the site listed in the above article, Hospital Compare. Readmissions data between hospitals throughout California from the database download was examined, and the hospitals were compared against one another. The data was then broken down into “Heart Attack,” “Heart Failure,” and “Pneumonia” readmission categories.Continue Reading
November 7th, 2012 | 1
Readmission is a major problem in U.S. hospitals, so much so that Hospital Impact reports that one out of every five Medicare patients is readmitted to the hospital within 30 days of being discharged. Hospital Impact reports that these readmissions come at a cost of approximately $17.5 billion each year.
While Fierce Healthcare reports that Medicare has a new policy- called a Readmissions Reduction Program – that docks up to 1 percent of pay for hospitals with high readmission rates, simply penalizing hospitals isn’t the answer. No hospital or rehabilitative care facility wants patients to be sent back into the hospital. The problem, as News Medical reports, is that hospitals are lacking in cohesive strategies to reduce readmission. Developing a detailed discharge plan, therefore, is a key first step in helping patients to thrive once they’ve left the hospital. So, how can hospitals succeed at doing this? Here are a few tips.Continue Reading
Hospital Admins Must Answer 5 Key Questions To Shape A Successful Post-Acute Care Strategy M.L. Sutton
October 13th, 2012 | 0
This post originally appeared here: http://medcitynews.com/2012/10/hospital-admins-must-answer-5-key-questions-to-shape-a-successful-post-acute-care-strategy/ and was published by MedCity News.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has fundamentally changed the healthcare marketplace and permanently altered the role of post-acute programs in the strategic response of health systems.
This is a challenge for many hospital systems as they have under invested in management talent and the infrastructure of their post-acute capabilities. As payment models evolve and providers become more accountable for patient’s costs, care will be driven to the lowest cost settings. A hospital’s post-acute capabilities could be an engine that drives profitability or the burden that causes missed opportunity.Continue Reading
REMINDER: Medicare To Penalize 2,211 Hospitals For Excess Readmissions [STARTING TODAY 10/1/12] M.L. Sutton
October 1st, 2012 | 0
This post originally appeared here: http://www.kaiserhealthnews.org/Stories/2012/August/13/medicare-hospitals-readmissions-penalties.aspx and was published by Kaiser Health News.
More than 2,000 hospitals — including some nationally recognized ones — will be penalized by the government starting in October because many of their patients are readmitted soon after discharge, new records show.
Together, these hospitals will forfeit about $280 million in Medicare funds over the next year as the government begins a wide-ranging push to start paying health care providers based on the quality of care they provide.
With nearly one in five Medicare patients returning to the hospital within a month of discharge, the government considers readmissions a prime symptom of an overly expensive and uncoordinated health system. Hospitals have had little financial incentive to ensure patients get the care they need once they leave, and in fact they benefit financially when patients don’t recover and return for more treatment.Continue Reading
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