“The best transition of care is when there is no transition at all.” James Lett, MD, coined this maxim many years ago, and it’s still the mantra of post-acute and long term care providers.
“Of course, sometimes transitions are necessary, so we need to focus on doing this as seamlessly as possible,” says Rajeev Kumar, MD, CMD, FACP, chief medical officer of Symbria in Warrenville, Ill. “Even though we are well into the third decade of meaningful EHR [electronic health record] use, we still have discordant records, and what happens in the hospital doesn’t always filter back to the nursing home, and vice versa.”
Read more at https://bit.ly/3pi1sRG
Long COVID—symptoms that drag on long after someone gets ill with the coronavirus—has many in long term and post-acute care experiencing déjà vu. Diagnostic challenges, questions about treatments, and a limited body of research—these are the same issues they faced at the start of the pandemic over a year ago.
However, while there are still questions, providers have learned much from the pandemic that will help centers navigate the challenges of long COVID and implement and sustain standards, processes, protocols, and interventions that maximize outcomes and quality of life for residents with this condition.
Read more by going to https://bit.ly/3lRAwoq
During the pandemic, sleep was in short order for many people. In one survey, 56 percent of U.S. adults said they have experienced more sleep disturbances—ranging from problems falling or staying asleep to having disturbing dreams or nightmares—in the past year and a half. In fact, this has been so common, the phenomenon has been given a name—COVID-somnia.
Pandemic-related sleep issues haven’t discriminated. Young and old people alike report some sleep-related problem. Long term and post-acute care centers not only need to identify and address sleep disturbances in their residents but in their staff as well.
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The article from Provider magazine discusses how clinical leaders can train nurses in various stages of growth through briefs and follow-through tutoring during resident assessments.
The complexities of the COVID-19 public health emergency required skilled nursing facility (SNF) operations to change dramatically and often to save the lives of the most vulnerable population. Through heroic efforts, SNFs transformed clinical systems of care, sometimes in less than a day, to win the war against the pandemic.
While operations and resources shifted to battle COVID-19, unintended consequences emerged—one being greater incidence of pressure injuries. Now that the pandemic is at a turning point, facilities can start to refocus and improve this trend. This article suggests ways to reorient efforts toward preventing and managing pressure injuries.
Read the full article at https://www.providermagazine.com/Monthly-Issue/2021/July/Pages/Hitting-Reset-on-Pressure-Injury-Prevention.aspx
In Provider’s February issue
, care providers share what COVID-19 policies have stood the test of time. In “Infection Control Lessons Learned,” clinicians say that new policies like patient isolation and enhanced disinfection procedures continue to work a year into the pandemic—and will continue to be important post-vaccination. “We probably will keep cohorting and isolation procedures for future outbreaks of infections, including the flu,” says Francine Rainer, chief clinical officer at PruittHealth.
What’s also emerged from the pandemic is a new portrait of the future of infection control. Best practices and lessons are parts of it, along with new CMS policies that providers say should continue.
Take the Skilled Nursing Facility 3-Day Rule Waiver, for example. “We are focusing on this moving forward and advocating that it be a permanent change,” says Erin Prendergast, AHCA/NCAL senior manager, quality improvement.
Find out what best practices will continue and more about the new face of infection control and prevention here
In its first ever digital issue, Provider reports on how COVID-19 has changed the supply and demand of telehealth services in long term and post-acute care. Read more here. [mmsend85.com]
All eyes and resources in the long term care profession currently are focused on the COVID-19 pandemic, and rightfully so. This virus has spread through facilities like nothing seen before.
Unlike COVID-19, the flu season arrives like clockwork on a yearly basis. Unfortunately, in addition to the ongoing pandemic, flu season is looming just around the corner. Now more than ever, facilities need to be proactive in protecting their residents.
This article spotlights four areas for facilities to focus on for influenza prevention and control this fall, while also remaining in substantial compliance with the Focused Infection Control Survey from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.
While the COVID pandemic has changed much in post-acute and long term care, efforts to provide quality care and track outcomes, trends, and opportunities for improvement have continued unabated. Facilities didn’t swap quality measures for COVID care, they just added it to what they were already doing.
Yet the pandemic has put a spotlight on how quality is defined, measured, and reimbursed, and it has exposed what works and where changes are needed.
“It is crystal clear that our nursing home residents are a vulnerable population that should not be exposed to the risk of pandemic, either because they are sent to hospitals or emergency rooms [ERs] unnecessarily or because new patients with potential infections are allowed to come into a building that is not yet exposed to the infection,” says Rajeev Kumar, MD, CMD, FACP, chief medical officer at Symbria in Chicago.
“Hopefully, surveyors and CMS [Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services] will work collaboratively with nursing facilities to minimize bad outcomes, rather than go on a witch hunt to find and use unfortunate outcomes to penalize nursing homes.”
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A new report released today by the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) shows skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) experiencing an “alarming spike” in COVID-19 cases due to community spread among the general population. The findings are based on recent data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).