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Provide your team with the resources, tools and education they need to hit a quality “Grand Slam.” Leading providers recognize the importance of key performance pillars—quality, compliance and reimbursement—to ensure overall success.
Top Weekly Picks: Resources for Quality Outcomes
Quality: Maintaining compliance in an ever-increasing regulatory-focused environment can be a challenge. View classroom training, webinars, recordings and other tools to implement a solid program.
Compliance: An effective Quality Assurance & Performance Improvement (QAPI) program is critical to improving quality of life and the delivery of quality care. View resources to keep your team on track.
Reimbursement: Being prepared for changes to reimbursement methodology is vital in order to achieve financial stability. View manuals, webinars, classroom training and tools to help pave the path to success.
Pathway is attending the Aging Services of Minnesota Foundation Golf Fundraiser
Peter Schuna and Dennis Anderson will be attending the Aging Services of Minnesota Foundation Golf Fundraiser on July 29th. Pathway Health is a proud to be a sponsor! The fundraiser is an afternoon designed to connect with colleagues, hit the links and raise some much-needed funds to support the work of the Aging Services of Minnesota’s Foundation. The foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization which supports initiatives designed to transform models of service delivery to seniors in Minnesota. To find out more about the fundraiser here. Click here to learn more!
CMS Releases Home Health Rule
On July 1, CMS released its proposed 2015 Final Rule (CMS-1611-P) for the Home Health Payment System. Proposed payments are decreased on average by 0.3 percent. The rule also implements increases to the national per-visit payment rates, and most importantly, changes the requirement for a face-to-face encounter to include a narrative that explains how the participant is clinically homebound and in need of skilled services. Face-to-face encounters are required for certifications, rather than initial episodes.
Aloha to National Nursing Home Week
Aloha stands for so much more than a simple “hello,” “goodbye” or “love.” The Aloha Spirit is a way of living and treating others with love and respect with the goal of creating a better world. That’s why “Living the Aloha Spirit” became this year’s National Nursing Home Week theme. National Nursing Home Week starts May 11 and continues through May 17 and focuses on how the long-term and post-acute care industry can apply the Aloha Spirit to create a harmonious, caring environment for those living in care centers.
This week, promote the Aloha Spirit through qualities of kindness, patience, harmony, and good feelings in caring and respect for others.
Staying Healthy This Influenza Season
It’s that time of year again to pull out the jacket and boots, curl up next to the fireplace, and get your annual flu vaccination.
The CDC recommends that everyone 6 months of age and older receive a yearly flu vaccination as the best preventative measure to avoiding Influenza. Persons 65 years of age and older, those that are immunocompromised, or have a chronic health condition are considered most at-risk for developing complications from the Influenza virus.
According to the CDC, about 90 percent of deaths during a regular flu season occur in people 65 years and older. While flu activity typically peaks in January or February, the season can last from October through May, so early vaccination is a must!
Other Ways You Can Stay Healthy:
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick and stay away from others when you are not feeling well.
• Stay home when you are sick, including: work, school, and running errands.
• Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
• Clean your hands often with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth to prevent spreading germs from other surfaces to those areas.
• Practice other good health habits including: Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces, get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage stress, drink lots of fluids, and eat nutritious food.
To view the CDC’s full guidelines regarding proper hand hygiene, click here.
How Your Facility Can Prepare For and Manage The Flu:
Effective flu management begins with prevention. Ensure staff members are properly washing hands and that appropriate infection control measures are being utilized facility-wide. Prepare the staff for what to do in case of an outbreak and what steps can be taken to minimize the number of Influenza cases before the season hits.
Proper surveillance and tracking must be utilized to detect changes in the influenza activity within a facility, so leadership teams can determine what adjustments must be made to current practices to keep influenza at bay or to contain an outbreak.
For more information on preventing seasonal influenza, click here.
Pathway Health at WI Director of Nursing Council’s fall workshop
Nancy is excited to attend the WI Director of Nursing Council’s fall workshop this week, where she will have the opportunity to connect and network with industry decisions-makers and nursing leadership.
Don’t forget to stop by our exhibit and connect with us to find out what Pathway Health can do to help take your organization to the next level.
Pathway Health at Illinois Health Care Association’s 63rd Annual Convention & Trade Show
Sue and Cheryl are exhibiting at this year’s Illinois Health Care Association’s 63rd Annual Convention & Trade Show Sept. 9-12, one of the largest and best-attended long-term care conventions and trade shows. This year’s theme, “The Champion Within,” represents the dedication, training and winning spirit of all long-term care professionals. For insight from a Pathway Health subject matter expert, be sure to attend Sue’s presentation!
Sue LaGrange – Wednesday, Sept. 11
10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
“Restorative Toileting Program”
Make sure to visit booth #601 to find out how Pathway Health’s insight, expertise and knowledge can help take your organization to the next level. We look forward to connecting with IHCA attendees through our presentations and at our booth.
Take a proactive approach to your staffing needs
The healthcare industry has been experiencing increased staffing challenges for the past ten years. With job vacancy rates between 11 and 20 percent, according to the Alzheimer’s Association, the long-term care industry is no exception. Staff shortages within the long-term care industry are predicted to become more desperate when the Affordable Care Act takes effect in 2014; 32 million Americans will become newly insured and the estimated 78 million baby boomers will begin requiring long-term care. With such a drastic rise in the number of patients needing care, staffing will need to grow exponentially.
Unfortunately, there is a disconnect between how healthcare executives see current staffing shortages and how they address them. A study shows that a significant number of executives rank staffing shortages within their facility lower than other issues, such as reimbursement and government regulations. Maintaining compliance needs to remain a top priority, but it’s challenging without a complete staff of knowledgeable and competent employees.
In order for long-term care facilities to provide the best care possible and reduce unnecessary spending on replacing skilled employees, it’s important to get the right employee in the right position. With ever-changing care models and expanding roles as a result of healthcare reform, organizations desperately need to be proactive and create a long-term plan for how to deal with staffing issues. Partnering with organizations that offer extensive interim management, consulting services and succession planning, as well as education and training programs, is one step in making your organization more resourceful and resilient to upcoming changes.
Don’t leave key leaderships positions vacant while you’re searching for a permanent placement; ensure that your organization has the leadership it needs long term and during periods of transition. Pathway Health can assist you in providing an interim staff member or by filling a permanent position. Our interim professionals will also provide you an unbiased assessment of your organization’s strengths and opportunities. Contact us and find out how we can help you fill vacancies in your skilled nursing, assisted living, home health or hospice organization.
Part Five: Getting QAPI Ready — Systematic Analysis and Systemic Action
Once you have a team working on a performance improvement project (PIPs) it’s vital to get to the root of that problem through systematic analysis and systemic action. By using root cause analysis (RCA) you will gain a structure for evaluating events and the ability to focus on the underlying breakdowns in systems or processes. Through this systematic approach you will be able to fully understand the problem and its causes. When using RCA we understand it can be challenging to define the problem or event in a manner that it is not too broad. The QAPI News Brief outlines a few steps of root cause analysis:
– Describe in detail the event so everyone can understand the steps that occurred and where decisions were being made.
– Look for root causes and their preceding factors as well as any contributing factors that added to the likelihood of the problem becoming an event.
– Sort identified gaps or breakdowns into categories: human factors, rules, policies or procedure, environment/equipment and barriers.
– Identify corrective actions and put a plan in place to measure the impact of these interventions.
Identifying the root cause is only the first step. Next, you will need to make changes or corrective actions that can be implemented at the system level throughout your facility. These corrective actions should offer long term solutions to the problem, target the elimination of the root causes and be achievable, objective and measureable.
We hope you enjoyed this series. Want to learn more? Check out how Pathway Health can help your organization prepare for QAPI through our upcoming QAPI webinar.