Head'em up, move'm on

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Inpatient and ancillary Services

Terence Dunn
Manager, Quality & Performance Improvement
Drake Center, Inc.

Complex patient needs may require continuing care after the patient is discharged from the inpatient setting. Understanding the post-acute spectrum of services and how to get patients into the right "box" efficiently can free up acute beds faster. This session explores how one system approached it.

The Drake Center and its associated businesses in the Cincinnati area include a long-term acute hospital (LTACH), outpatient therapies, skilled nursing facility (SNF), and assisted living community. Following its affiliation with the Health Alliance, average daily LTACH census increased from 70 to 105 per day as barriers to admission and referral were removed. This change in turn decompressed the flow at the Alliance's other hospitals.

Changes in reimbursement have made it harder for acute hospitals to send out patients requiring longer complex acute care, who typically consume tremendous resources but achieve fixed payment. Knowing how the post-acute world works can help optimize how regular hospitals manage inpatient cases more effectively and profitably.