Monday, December 12, 2011

How can hospitals decrease readmission for Medicare patients?

One of the goals of the new Affordable Care Act is for hospitals to decrease the number of patients that are readmitted into the hospital after they've been discharged.  Studies show that currently, one out of five Medicare patients are readmitted in 30 days while 35% are readmitted within 90 days.  This costs the government $17 billion.  So as incentive to change this the Affordable Care Act is tying reimbursement to how many patients are re-admitted into the hospital.  One of the key reasons for this is patients aren't aware of how to properly care for themselves after they leave the hospital, often due to miscommunication in the discharge process.

In this article from the Washington Post, they share that researchers from Northeastern University have developed an avatar that patients can watch from their hospital beds on TV that go over their care instructions after they're discharged from the hospital.  This is called "Project Red", and has shown that readmission for patients have dropped by 30% in use during clinical trials.

At the 9th Annual Medicare Congress, Charles Mackay, CPHQ, Health Insurance Specialist, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will be keynoting a speech entitled "Health Rebooted: How Taking Technology All the Way will Solve Both the Cost and Quality Problems" which will look at technologies like this and others that can improve the care of Medicare patients and efficiency of hospitals.  For more information on this presentation and the rest of the program, download the brochure here.  Don't forget, as a reader of this blog, mention code XP1707BLOG to receive a discount of 25% when you register to join us this February in Orlando!

Do you believe a process like this can help both hospitals and patients?

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