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AARC to Solicit Best Practices

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May 16, 2013

According to a 2009 Medicare study, nearly 20% of Medicare beneficiaries are re-hospitalized within 30 days of discharge at an annual cost of $17 billion.1

With readmissions penalties, payment reductions, and uncertainty created by the Affordable Care Act, we are all in need of some information to deal with these challenges. We are already beginning to see readmission reduction programs implemented for chronic diseases.

As we look closer at COPD and other chronic pulmonary conditions, our profession is in a unique position to make a positive difference in patient care outcomes. By better preparing our patients to self-manage their condition, we should expect to see fewer readmissions to the hospital.

At their Spring meeting, the AARC Board of Directors approved a measure to be proactive in assisting respiratory care departments manage these challenges. To that end, we will be soliciting our membership for Best Practices in reducing readmissions and redefining value for the respiratory therapist.

These best practice ideas may take the form of an inpatient or outpatient protocol, COPD admission/readmission order sets, medication protocols, and more. Once we collect these, they will be vetted and made available to AARC members from which to design their own programs.

Also as a follow up there will be webcast that will share how such a program can be set up by those who have already been successful.

Begin thinking of programs and services you offer that would be helpful to others in the respiratory care community to use as a springboard for their own readmission reduction ideas.

1. Jencks SF, Williams MV, Coleman EA. Rehospitalizations among patients in the Medicare fee-for-service program. N Engl J Med2009;360:1418-1428[ N Engl J Med 2011;364:1582.]