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Category Archives: Home Health

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Root Cause Analysis with Karolee Alexander

Pathway Health’s Karolee Alexander presents the webinar, titled, “Clinical Online Workshop: Root Cause Analysis,” hosted by Care Providers of Minnesota. The event will provide participants with best practices for thorough root cause analysis and how to prioritize necessary changes.

Objectives:

  • Understand the intent of a root cause analysis
  • Learn several techniques for performing and teaching others to perform a root cause analysis

The webinar will take place on June 12 from 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.

Check out more educational opportunities from Pathway Health »

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Sufficient and Competent Staffing with LeadingAge KS

The third installment of our 7 Part Webinar Series on culturally competent procedures and actions for nursing facilities is here.

The event, “Sufficient and Competent Staffing, Having a Plan for All Three F-Tags (F725, F741, F802), answers questions on employee engagement, quality of work in the nursing field, and more. When there are not enough hours in the day to fulfill your duties, trust in the procedures declines.

This series also continues its goal of educating nursing professionals on all Phase 3 updates to regulations going into effect in late November 2019. Stay ahead of the changes and sign up today.

Tune into the webinar on February 12. Read more details on course content and registration details here.

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Register now! Fireside Training Courses in February

Pathway Health offers multiple opportunities to bolster your professional education in the new year. Register now for guaranteed access to one of our Fireside Training classes.

 

By striving to improve yourself and your colleagues, your facility grows the quality of its care and the effectiveness of its staff. Explore the multiple options for furthering your education with Pathway Health on our Education page for more insight, expertise, and knowledge.

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Announcing Exclusive INTERACT® License Agreement

Pathway Health announces they have entered into an exclusive licensing agreement with Florida Atlantic University (FAU) to provide INTERACT® training, education, management, consulting services, including INTERACT™ 4.0 for Skilled Nursing Facilities, INTERACT™ 1.0 for Assisted Living and INTERACT™ 1.0 for Home Health. Under the terms of the agreement Pathway Health will also be sub-licensing the copyrighted INTERACT™ 4.0 and INTERACT™ 1.0 systems to entities such as Electronic Health Record providers and other technologies that want to incorporate INTERACT into their product offerings.

“Our nearly 20 years as a proven resource to the health care field, coupled with our insight, expertise and knowledge in the post-acute care continuum were the reasons that FAU selected Pathway Health as the exclusive company with the right to license and provide training, education and expertise to providers implementing INTERACT,” said Pathway Health Chief Executive Officer Peter B. Schuna.

INTERACT® (Interventions to Reduce Acute Care Transfers) is a quality improvement program that focuses on the management of acute change in patient condition. It includes clinical and educational tools, strategies to implement them, and related educational resources.

“Even though the INTERACT quality improvement program is publicly available, effective implementation and ongoing training are key to substantially reduce unnecessary interventions, as well as complications and costs associated with these interventions,” said FAU Vice President for Research Daniel C. Flynn, Ph.D.

Through this agreement, Pathway Health will continue to leverage their expansive network of consultants and strategic partners to help reduce hospital readmission rates and improve overall efficiencies.

“Pathway Health’s expert consultants will collaboratively assist hospitals, skilled nursing and assisted living facilities, home care companies and accountable care organizations improve the quality of care by providing key insights and training to support providers’ value-based care initiatives,” commented INTERACT creator Joseph G. Ouslander, M.D.

To learn more about how to effectively implement INTERACT or becoming a strategic partner, contact Peter Schuna at 877-777-5463.

Blog

Announcing Exclusive INTERACT® License Agreement

Pathway Health announces they have entered into an exclusive licensing agreement with Florida Atlantic University (FAU) to provide INTERACT® training, education, management, consulting services, including INTERACT™ 4.0 for Skilled Nursing Facilities, INTERACT™ 1.0 for Assisted Living and INTERACT™ 1.0 for Home Health. Under the terms of the agreement Pathway Health will also be sub-licensing the copyrighted INTERACT™ 4.0 and INTERACT™ 1.0 systems to entities such as Electronic Health Record providers and other technologies that want to incorporate INTERACT into their product offerings.

“Our nearly 20 years as a proven resource to the health care field, coupled with our insight, expertise and knowledge in the post-acute care continuum were the reasons that FAU selected Pathway Health as the exclusive company with the right to license and provide training, education and expertise to providers implementing INTERACT,” said Pathway Health Chief Executive Officer Peter B. Schuna.

INTERACT® (Interventions to Reduce Acute Care Transfers) is a quality improvement program that focuses on the management of acute change in patient condition. It includes clinical and educational tools, strategies to implement them, and related educational resources.

“Even though the INTERACT quality improvement program is publicly available, effective implementation and ongoing training are key to substantially reduce unnecessary interventions, as well as complications and costs associated with these interventions,” said FAU Vice President for Research Daniel C. Flynn, Ph.D.

Through this agreement, Pathway Health will continue to leverage their expansive network of consultants and strategic partners to help reduce hospital readmission rates and improve overall efficiencies.

“Pathway Health’s expert consultants will collaboratively assist hospitals, skilled nursing and assisted living facilities, home care companies and accountable care organizations improve the quality of care by providing key insights and training to support providers’ value-based care initiatives,” commented INTERACT creator Joseph G. Ouslander, M.D.

To learn more about how to effectively implement INTERACT or becoming a strategic partner, contact Peter Schuna at 877-777-5463.

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Home Health Patient Experience of Care Star Ratings Released by CMS

Quality: It is Written in the Stars

On January 28, 2016 CMS released the first Home Health Care Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HHCAHPS) Survey star ratings on Home Health Compare.

Click here to view the CMS media release>

The HHCAHPS survey tool seeks to evaluate patients’ experiences with home health agencies (HHAs) using data from clients (or the family or friends of clients) that have been cared for by the agency. The HHCAHPS Survey star ratings report clients’ experiences of care ranging from one star to five stars. Five stars is the highest rating, reflecting the best client experience.
The HHCAHPS survey tool was designed to meet three broad CMS goals:

  • To produce comparable data on the client’s perspective that allows objective and meaningful comparisons between home health agencies on care and services important to consumers.
  • To create incentives for agencies to improve their quality of care.
  • To enhance public accountability in health care by increasing the transparency of the quality of care provided.

Previously, consumers have had access to Quality of Patient Care star ratings for Home Health Agencies (HHAs). These star ratings summarize home health agencies’ performance on nine quality measures that indicate how well they assist their patients in regaining or maintaining important functional abilities and how frequently they adhere to evidence-based processes of care.

The addition of the HHCAHPS Survey star ratings to the Home Health Compare website offers clients and their family members another tool to inform their choices about which HHAs in their community are scoring well based on client feedback. The Home Health Compare website now offers consumers the ability to view five HHCAHPS Survey star ratings including:

  • Care of Patients
  • Communication Between Providers and Patients
  • Specific Care Issues
  • Overall Rating of Care provided by the HHA
  • Survey Summary star rating

It is imperative that HHAs take an active role in assuring that the HHCAHPS survey results for their agency reflect the excellent care and service they are delivering to their clients.

Helpful Tips for Home Health Agencies:

  • HHAs should review their survey results before they are published on Home Health Compare and notify the HHCAHPS coordination team if they have questions, comments or concerns about the accuracy of their reported results. CMS publicly reports HHCAHPS Survey results for each HHA on a quarterly basis. Each HHA’s results are available to the HHA to review on the HHCAHPS website before they are publicly reported on Home Health Compare.
  • HHAs should review their Home Health Admission Packet which is given to the client at the time of admission to home health services. Be sure to include a statement about the HHCAHPS survey that encourages the client to respond to the survey when they receive it. Consider adding language similar to the following:
    • “Our agency has contracted with a vendor who is approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to perform mandatory Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) surveys. If Medicare or Medicaid is paying for your home health care, our vendor may contact you by mail or telephone regarding your experience and satisfaction with our agency. Our customers are very important to us. Please ask questions if something is unclear regarding our services or the care you receive or fail to receive. Our agency may also contact you by mail to assess our care or to check on the services we are providing. We will not ask the same questions included in the HHCAHPS survey. Your answers will help us improve our services and ensure that we meet your needs and expectations.”
  • Provide training to your staff members regarding the questions that will be asked of the client in the HHCAHPS survey. An understanding of the survey questions will focus the home health team members on these key areas as they provide care and service to the client. Pay particular attention to assuring the team is:
    • Informed and up-to-date about the client’s care;
    • Asking about client pain and taking action to alleviate pain as appropriate;
    • Teaching the client about the purpose for taking their prescription medications, when to take the medications, and the potential side effects of the medications;
    • Arriving at the client’s home in a timely manner;
    • Treating the client gently, with courtesy and respect;
    • Explaining things in a manner the client can understand and then listening carefully to what the client has to say;
    • Responding to client phone calls, questions and requests in an expedient manner.
  • Encourage the Home Health team members during their care and service to the clients to use words that are similar to those used in the HHCAHPS survey. For example, after conducting a medication review, reconciliation and client teaching state, “I want to be sure that you understand the reason you are taking each medication, when you should take each medication and the potential side effects you may experience as a result of taking the medications.” Or if asking questions of the client’s health history, state, “I want to make sure our home health team members are informed and up-to-date regarding your care.”

Sources: CMS.gov; Medicare.gov; Home Health Compare

Need more information or assistance?  Contact us.

Lisa-A

 

Lisa Abicht-Swensen, M.H.A.

Director of Home Care and Hospice

 

 

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The Right Connection for the Right Role

Header graphic
Pathway Health provides quality leadership solutions to skilled nursing, assisted living, home care and hospice providers across the nation.
Healthcare leaders choose Pathway Health Connections for Interim Management and Talent Acquisition services to find the right professional who will be compatible with the culture, value and mission of their organization. Our vetted professionals, whether for a short-term, interim solution or long-term, permanent position, are ready to meet the demands and pressures of the changing health care environment.
InterimInterim Management Services

Having a vacant key leadership position affects clinical quality outcomes and impacts the financial health of your organization. Pathway Health Connections can guide this transition by assisting you in finding an experienced interim staff member. Learn more

TalentTalent Acquisition Services

We find the right professional who will be compatible with the culture, value and mission of your organization. Our candidates are ready to meet the demands and pressures of the changing health care environment. Learn More

 

Pathway Health provides the insight, expertise and knowledge to keep your organization on the right path.
Visit pathwayhealth.com or call us at 877-777-5463.

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Shop Now for Pre-Black Friday Savings!

 

Black Friday

Shop Now and Save 25%

Manuals, Training, Resources & Tools*
Visit ShopPathwayHealth.com and Enter Code BF25 at checkout.

*Offer excludes AANAC, INTERACT™ 4.0, ICD-10 and Restorative training.
Expires 12/31/15


 

w5-PHS-102014-Shop-Icons_WEBINARS-LEADERSHIPWebinars (Live and Recorded)
We have an extensive online catalog of live and recorded webinars, focusing on hot topics, industry updates, clinical systems, health care initiatives and more.

 

Classroom Training
Designed for healthcare professionals, each of our training sessions w5-PHS-102014-Shop-Icons_CLASSROOM-TRAININGincorporates industry insight and overview, leadership/professional strategies, operational implementation strategies, and quality monitoring processes.

 

QuickPathsunnamed
Streamlined tools, focused on one specific topic, serve as a starting point for facility leaders to quickly assess their current practices, policies, procedures and processes.

 

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Specifically designed to target new healthcare initiatives or a specific clinical or operational system.

 

 

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Pathway Health Supports the Daily Work of Personal Care

Hospice MonthNovember is National Hospice and Palliative Care Month (often referred to as Home Care & Hospice Month). This year’s theme—Hospice. Helps. Everyone.—perfectly describes the goal of any great palliative program: To provide the best end-of-life support, according to the wishes (and care plan) of a patient and family dealing with a terminal illness.

The benefits of hospice can be seen by the soaring number of people who are selecting this option for comprehensive palliative treatment. According to a 2014 study by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization:

  • Hospices range in size from small agencies, with fewer than 50 patients per year, to large corporate chains that care for thousands of patients each day.
  • An estimated 1.5 million patients in the U.S. choose services from hospice, with half of these patients receiving care for 14 days or less.
  • More than 80 percent of hospice and home care patients rely on Medicare.
  • Hospices care for more than half of all Americans who die from cancer, and a growing number of patients with other chronic, life-threatening illnesses, such as end-stage heart or lung disease, as well as HIV/AIDS and Alzheimer’s disease.

Awareness and Appreciation

From in-patient facilities to home care, the number of people served by hospice is quickly growing, which is helping to prove palliative care’s important role. Below are three ways to spread awareness about the hospice movement:

  1. Support the Hospice Action Network, the advocacy arm of NHPCO, which applies pressure in Washington, D.C., to create comprehensive legislation and regulation around end-of-life issues.
  2. Join the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) in thanking millions of nurses, home care aides, therapists, and social workers, who are part of the hospice and home care network.
  3. Allow Pathway Health’s insight, expertise and knowledge related to hospice care to have a real impact with you, as a post-acute care provider.

Pathway Health’s hospice consultants assist organizations with assessing, monitoring and improving clinical operations through education, performance improvement assessments, and recommendations on strategies to improve outcomes.

Do you understand the changing hospice regulations? Let Pathway Health be your guide.

 

w1-PHS-041515-Lisa-Cutout

 

Lisa Abicht-Swensen
Pathway Health
Director of Home Care and Hospice Services

 

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Start Out on the Right Path with Home Health Star Ratings

For the first time this week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published star ratings to help consumers compare home health agencies when choosing a provider. The release of this first round of Home Health Compare Quality of Patient Care Star Ratings is part of a larger effort by the Department of Health and Human Services to transform the nation’s health care system to allocate money in the best way and place patients at the center of care.

According to the CMS news release, “In addition to summarizing certain data about Home Health Agency performance for consumers, star ratings can also help the agencies identify areas for improvement.” Each Home Health Agency receives a Quality of Patient Care Star Rating that encompasses performance on 9 of the 29 quality measures, including:

  • How often the home health team taught patients (or their family caregivers) about their prescribed drugs.
  • How often home health patients got better at getting in and out of bed.
  • How often home health patients’ breathing improved.
  • How often home health patients had to be admitted to the hospital.

 

Pathway Health Knows the Importance of Measuring Quality Care
Pathway Health provides quality service and post-acute care expertise to skilled nursing, assisted living, home care and hospice providers across the nation. With an increasing focus on delivering quality care, it is more important than ever for facility leaders to understand Quality Measures (QMs) and how they are used for survey outcomes, Star Ratings and public awareness.

Identify opportunities for improving quality outcomes with the following proactive measures:

  • Complete a root cause analysis process review to identify key process gaps.
  • Review compliance programs and Five Star analysis, in order to develop and implement a focused quality improvement plan.
  • Complete a quality regulatory review to ensure adherence to state and federal guidelines.
  • Hire an independent, outside expert to provide an objective quality assessment review and provide feedback.

 

Important Resources for Your Reference:

Home Health Compare—CMS’s public information website for Home Health Agencies

CMS’ Fact Sheet: The Medicare Home Health Benefit