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How Carelike Improves Discharge Planning for Better Patient Outcomes

Locating the best post-acute resources to fulfill a patient’s needs after being discharged from an inpatient setting is critical for optimal patient outcomes.

Studies show that 23 percent of Medicare patients discharged from a hospital for acute care end up being readmitted within 30 days. Additionally, 51 percent of Medicare patients discharged after a surgical procedure either died or were rehospitalized within the first year after discharge.

While some of these rehospitalizations may have been planned (up to 10 percent), others could have been prevented with a better discharge planning strategy.

In many cases, the patients may have been discharged to home-based care vs. a skilled nursing facility. At the outset, this move can save on healthcare costs. However, a comprehensive study found that patients who were discharged to home health care had a 5.6 percent higher rate of rehospitalization than patients who were discharged to a skilled nursing facility (SNF).

Putting Patients first for Post-Acute Care

For care providers, the ultimate goal is to avoid readmission by directing patients to post-acute care facilities that can help them through their recovery, so they don’t end up back in the hospital.

When it comes to discharging patients, it’s critical to think in terms of best patient outcomes instead of upfront costs. By putting the patient’s care first, hospitals can save on expenses that result from rehospitalization.

At the same time, we all know that coming up with the right strategy can be easier said than done. Determining the best facility to send a patient to after discharge and then locating it for the patient can turn into a logistical nightmare without the right tools.

Using the Right Healthcare Directory for Discharge Planning

Discharge planners first need to take a comprehensive look at what types of facilities would best serve the needs of each patient to meet their post-acute care needs. Then, discharge planners need access to accurate healthcare facility data. This information is critical for directing patients to conveniently located facilities with the resources they need for appropriate continued care.

HealthLink Dimensions’ Discharge Directory Resource (DDR) provides hospitals and health systems with up-to-date data from public and private sources that helps case management provide accurate information to patients and their caregivers. With Carelike DDR, you can see essential information about each facility, including treatment specialties, accepted forms of payment, unique facilities and services, which facilities are high referral partners or owned locations, and CMS star ratings with quality insights.

With this type of detailed information, families can access and search DDR in and beyond the hospital. This provides the necessary disclosures and empowers them to make the best decisions for post-acute care based on their geographic location, insurance, and other needs. In addition, because it provides national reach, patients and caregivers can get information about geographically convenient facilities, even if they are outside a hospital’s home area.

Hospitals also benefit from the directory. DDR simplifies and reduces data acquisition and management costs, resulting in lower operational costs and better patient outcomes. By using one trusted source, hospitals can save on costs while delivering better care. It’s a win-win for everyone.

Are you interested in learning more about how Carelike DDR can positively impact your hospital or healthcare organization? Contact us today to get started.

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