A recent story reported by Kaiser Health News highlighted the problems hospitals are facing due to the new Medicare payment policies. According to the article, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston received word that it had one of the highest Medicare readmission rates in the nation in 2012. As such, it would be subject to federal penalties of over one million dollars.
This came as a shock to many in the Beth Israel Deaconess community. The renowned teaching hospital is affiliated with Harvard Medical School and is widely regarded to provide high-quality care.
A PACT for Better Patient Care
The article went on to report how Beth Israel Deaconess responded to this problem. They used a $5 million grant from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to establish a new PACT program. PACT stands for post-acute care transitions. The program charges nurses and pharmacists with tracking Medicare patients who are at high risk for readmission within 30 days, for a problem directly related to the condition they were initially hospitalized for.
PACT will focus on integrating care and improving transitions of care. Using a wide array of evidence-based best practices to prevent complications and better communicate with patients about disease and medication self-management.
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