The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced a partnership with 145 nursing homes last weekend as part of seven cooperative agreement awards that will implement the Initiative to Reduce Avoidable Hospitalizations among Nursing Facility Residents.
Through the program, facilities will test models to improve the quality of care given to recently-discharged hospital patients and help reduce avoidable readmissions. This will be done by funding organizations that provide enhanced on-site services and supports to nursing facility residents.
A significant portion of nursing home residents are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid, and approximately 45% of hospitalizations among dual eligibles who are receiving either Medicare skilled nursing facility services or Medicaid nursing home services could have been avoided, according to research. The total costs for these potentially avoidable hospitalizations in 2011 were estimated to range between $7-8 billion.
“We are excited about this partnership and the programs these seven organizations are putting in place to work with nursing facilities to ensure the best possible care for their residents.” said Acting Administrator Marilyn Tavenner. “We view this initiative and the enhanced level of collaboration it will generate among a variety of providers as the key to reducing costly and avoidable hospitalizations for this population that often has the most complex health care needs.”
CMS will be partnering with the seven organizations to improve care for long-stay nursing home residents in the 145 facilities participating in the initiative. The organizations will collaborate with both the facilities and the state Medicaid programs to provide a better quality of care. The initiative will be implemented later this year and will involve working toward smother care transitions and leveraging the use of emerging technologies.
Written by Alyssa Gerace