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Chronic Disease Program Management: Are You Ready To Make It Work Instead Of Treading Water Doing The Same Old Thing?

PDGMChronic Disease Program Management is one of those things that is sometimes put on the back burner. You worry about finances, referrals and staffing to cover the patients you have as well as being able to staff new ones. Coding and Oasis and compliance are in there too. It may seem one takes the front burner until it boils, and it just becomes a juggling routine. Sound familiar? It is time to make chronic disease management the answer to it all. 

Moving Into PDGM: 

With ACOs and Value-Based Purchasing, agencies got a taste of outcome-based care. The goal was always for a more coordinated effort to manage care in a cost-effective way. The process always meant managing chronic disease related to the costs associated with it. Process changes meant optimizing all disciplines to function at full scope of practice. It also meant coordinating all those moving parts, so everyone worked together. 

Now, with the 2020 initiation of the new payment rules, agencies will have 30-day payments for care. If your payments significantly drop once a patient is on more than 30 days, what do you think happens to the average length of stay for a patient? The goal from the beginning of skilled care was to get the patient independent and back to previous level of function. Only a small number of patients were intended for multiple episodes of care.

Putting Everything Into Place: 

A more coordinated effort into chronic disease management fits directly into an agency’s fiscal survival in PDGM. In order to make this happen, agencies must move full steam ahead with chronic disease education programs that work. Education for disciplines independently don’t address the coordinated effort towards the care plan. It is the difference between disease knowledge versus a true education about disease. Look at programs designed for the discipline itself as well as the agency. This will help you move operations into a coordinated model focused on the care plan and not on tasks by a discipline. 

Chronic Disease Management With Kenyon: 

At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have online chronic disease education programs to help you move in the right direction. We also have senior associates who can help you alter operational process if you want on-site assistance. Call us at 206-721-5091 or contact us online for your free 30-minute consultation with a senior associate. 

Moving Into 2020: Wrapping Your Head Around Evolving Clinical Staff Into The New PDGM Model Of Care. By The Way, This Includes Every Person Who Sees The Patient.

changeThis is a big time for transition in homecare. This industry just came off a year with the first changes to the Conditions of Participation in decades. It is a big deal. Now, you are faced with new a payment model for 2020. If you think this is just about payment, then you need to research more about the PDGM model. 

Bye Bye Therapy Thresholds: 

The industry knew this was coming. No longer will there be additional reimbursement related to the number of therapy visits. This is a good change. In order to “see” all members of the homecare team working together, there should not be incongruence in reimbursement for one over the other. Many providers continue to struggle with therapy providers not willing to comply with coordination of care or working towards shared care plan goals. This can’t happen in the PDGM model. 

Working As A True Team: 

This is huge too.  For years, healthcare has pushed to eliminate the silos of care between providers. However, the focus has been from hospital to SNF or SNF to homecare. It has not been focused on homecare discipline to homecare discipline. It is always the assumption that all clinicians within a realm of healthcare already work as a tight knit unit. Reality is, this isn’t the case in so many agencies. If you don’t have true interdisciplinary care and care planning, then it is unrealistic to think it will be successful with outside providers. So, this means fix the issues in your own house before the PDGM model hits and 30-day payments are in place. 

Begin With Education: 

Chronic disease care is the key to a true medical home model. It requires clinicians to be laser-focused on a shared patient care plan. All caregivers need educated about working in this type of model. It means more than nurses rattling off signs and symptoms of a CHF exacerbation. It is more than the aide documenting blood sugar readings. The COPD patient with pulse ox readings from the therapist doesn’t manage chronic disease. These items are all task-related and not about management of the disease. A comprehensive chronic disease management program gives you the paradigm shift you need in a PDGM model. It sets you up to be efficient and profitable. 

Call Us For Help: 

At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have comprehensive online disease management programs on the clinician and agency level. Call us at 206-721-5091 or contact us online for more into how chronic disease management is the key to future success.

Continue Fine Tuning Your Chronic Disease Education Program And Its Potential Will Go Through The Roof! See How To Make It A Whole Lot Easier From Start To Finish!

chronic disease educationOk, let’s say you have been in this process of chronic disease management for a while now. You know it is an ongoing process and that chronic disease education must be a major focus. If it seems like you put all the pieces together, then you should be able to see what the puzzle is.  If you can’t, then let’s look at why fine tuning is so important. 

How Involved Are You? 

This is a good question for owners whether you are clinical or not. What do you see in your work flow of chronic disease management? Does conferencing between disciplines happen the way the program was set up? Or, do you see “report” with nothing related to shared care plan goals. If you don’t know the answer, then it’s time to sit in and objectively listen to communication between disciplines during care conference. Often, conferencing can start out with the best of intentions and clinicians start to revert to old habits. Care conferencing and report are two completely different things.  Make changes when needed and be involved in evaluating the program along the way. 

Make Sure You Have A Clear Leader In Chronic Disease: 

Ideally, your clinical manager should be the gatekeeper for care coordination. If you see format that looks more like report than coordinated care planning, then talk with your gatekeeper. It is important to make chronic disease a main focus for your clinical manager. Do not assume the clinical manager can’t be distracted by everything else going on in the office. It is a busy and big job. You need to make sure the clinical manager role can wholly focus on clinical. Don’t have your clinical manager doing things office staff can. Chronic disease education and chronic disease management are too important.  

Kenyon Homecare Consulting Can Help! 

At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have online programs for individuals and for agencies. Call us today at 206-721-5091 or contact us online to see if our program is right for you.   

Understand the Difference Between Chronic Disease Knowledge Versus Chronic Disease Education? Which One Will Better Help Your Agency Manage Disease?

make things happenIn home health today, you can’t talk long-term success without chronic disease management. Many agencies have not seen the results they desire from chronic disease education efforts. But the focus has to be true education and not just knowledge. Let’s look at the difference. 

Chronic Disease Knowledge: 

Chronic disease knowledge is memorization. Name 5 signs and symptoms of a CHF exacerbation. Give the definition of Diabetes. These are clinical things you want your disease management team to know. If not, then how will an exacerbation be recognized? It’s important to have certain things memorized and no one would dispute it. But, is this all you need to succeed in chronic care? 

Chronic Disease Education: 

This is your next step in chronic disease management. Clinicians need to memorize the data and move to the next level.  Chronic disease education is about putting all the pieces together clinically. It is understanding how the signs and symptoms work together. It is recognizing small differences in patient data. 

Putting The Pieces Together: 

The home health aide with advanced chronic disease education may hear the patient complain of feeling tired or winded. That home health aide looks at the patient differently because the care plan addresses chronic disease management for CHF. The aide knows to check patient weight and compare or call the nurse to see what it was on the visit yesterday. That aide can catch an early weight gain prior to full exacerbation or emergent care. If not, the aide may just document the patient was tired and move on to the next. It is the therapist involved in best practice who addresses chronic disease care as opposed to just rehabilitation goals. A key in this whole picture is the nurse coordinating with all disciplines to guide focused patient care. 

Move From Knowledge To Education: 

At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have online chronic disease education for your organization and individuals. If you want to take the next step, then call us at 206-721-5091 or contact us online today.

Do You Need To Analyze Your Chronic Disease Management Program On A Routine Basis? Absolutely! Let’s Look At What Your Program Needs To Consider To Be Top Of The Line!

education and successChronic Disease Management is a big deal for home health and the healthcare industry in general. But, with all the industry initiatives and regulations, it is sometimes on the back-burner in home health agencies. If you are planning long term success in home care, then you must analyze and improve your program. 

Evaluate Chronic Disease Management Success: 

This is an ongoing process and begin with what you do well. Look at outcomes. Are they improved? If so, what made the difference in those with chronic disease? It is just as important to know what is working well as it is to change what isn’t. If not, you may alter something that was already successful. Conjecture is not a good thing here. 

What Should Be On The Checklist? 

This should start with basic items and transform much as your CQI program does. Once things have improved to your gold standard, then maintenance then becomes key. Let’s look at what is important. 

  • How Old Are Your Protocols? If the program looks the same as it did 15 years ago, then see if you keep with industry standard. Do you consult with outside sources on what is working for others? 
  • What Is Team Member Understanding Of The Protocols? You may think this isn’t measurable, but the important thing is to check consistency. If Nurse A follows protocols differently than Nurse B, then how can the agency expect to accurately complete the program? Understanding how the protocols are to be executed is key here. This includes what your organization needs documented, reported, and addressed. 
  • Who Makes Up Your Chronic Care Team? If you say all clinical disciplines, then you should be able to communicate how each fit into the puzzle. What within your organization makes each discipline involved in managing chronic disease? This is about your paradigm of disciplines working together managing the overall care plan. It is not specific to nurses. This also means that no individual discipline functions independently regarding chronic disease. Communication on admission should be specific to all disciplines collectively about what is addressed every time someone has eyes on the patient. It should be reviewed and revised during the progression of the care plan. 
  • What Does The Education Look Like? Knowledge is different than education here. The best example is someone that can spell a word but can’t define it.  Think about that. Can your staff memorize symptoms to report, but not practically apply it? If this is the case, then your big start is your educational program for all your disciplines. 

Kenyon Homecare Consulting Can Help! 

At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have comprehensive online chronic disease management education for agencies and individual disciplines. Call us at 206-721-5091 or contact us online for details. 

The Time That Your Home Health Quits Evolving Its Chronic Disease Education And Management Program, The Tougher The Road Will Be. Make Sure Your Program Has The Happy Ending And Outcomes You Want!

advanced disease educationHappy Thanksgiving everyone! When you think of chronic disease education, you may think it is a one-time deal. The key to making a successful program is education that consistently evolves with the staff and the patients. Let’s see what that looks for your agency. 

How Does Your Chronic Disease Program Run Now? 

Here’s the way it normally works in different agencies: 

  • Nurses get education as part of orientation. 
  • Then, nurses are responsible to educate patients and families. 
  • Nurses are responsible for the outcomes related to chronic disease. 

Do you see the problem here? Many times, chronic disease education and programs have the entire responsibility in the laps of nurses. If you think about this, then it doesn’t really make sense.  As the industry continues to improve outcomes at less cost, why not maximize use of all disciplines? Most agencies do not focus on aide education when it comes to chronic disease. When therapy is a contracted entity, they are often skipped over as well. If you don’t use all disciplines effectively, then patient care costs more and it is harder to maximize outcomes.

Time For A Change: 

Analyze your program to include the education you provide. How often do you revisit chronic disease education? It can feel tough since you have so many things you try to focus on and improve. Ultimately, managing chronic disease should always be the focus. Evaluate the current efficacy of your program. Include the entire interdisciplinary team in the management of chronic disease. Nurses should be the case managers, but not responsible for it all.  Home health aides and therapy disciplines are important in this care plan. It means more frequent and effective case conferences. It is a goal-oriented focus as opposed to a task-oriented one. 

Let Us Help Get You There: 

At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have advanced chronic disease education programs to get you there. If you aren’t sure, then let’s talk through it. Call us at 206-721-5091 or contact us online to see how our chronic disease education can help you! 

Do You Need To Continue Your Current Chronic Disease Education Or Look At Something Different? Let’s Take A Look Through Objective Eyes.

Chronic disease educationIf you are an agency that values education but aren’t seeing the results from it, then you need to read this. Importance of chronic disease education continues to be huge. Let’s look at why you may struggle even when you invest in education. 

Take A Different Approach To Online Education: 

Often, an agency pays a one-time fee to a live webinar or webinar playback. This allows you one-time access. For many agencies, to purchase a copy is too costly.  If this is the case, then ALL staff must be out of the field to participate. This is difficult. In the age of technology, why restrict your agency to hearing something once? 

As administration, look at programs that allow you bundles of log on options. This will allow flexibility of clinical staff to see patients and still complete additional education. Bundles allow multiple views and agencies to use chronic disease education during orientation. 

Chronic Disease Education Isn’t Just For Nurses: 

Skilled home health chronic disease education has always been nurse driven. It made sense in the beginning since nurses case manage and usually opened and closed the cases. Now, focusing chronic disease education efforts just for nurses hinders overall disease management. How? Well, you potentially leave out every other clinical discipline involved in these cases. There is no reason therapists and home health aides should not be laser-focused on chronic disease too.  It is all about managing the patient with each resource placed in the home. 

Make Sure You Change Agency Mindset First: 

Help skilled clinicians utilize other disciplines for everything within scope of practice. Nurses tend to do it all themselves. Why should this be the case when other disciplines are in the home? Nurses cannot be everything to every patient all the time and shouldn’t be. Change the paradigm in your agency and your education can be more effective than ever. Then, pull your home care aides for education first. This discipline is physically with the patient the most, but greatly under-utilized in helping manage chronic disease. 

We Can Help:

At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have comprehensive online chronic disease education for your agency and home care aides. This is a great step of integrating all skilled disciplines to manage chronic disease.  Call us today at 206-721-5091 or contact us online to let us talk with you about taking the next step towards improving your program and patient outcomes!

Does Your Chronic Disease Education Program Make Honor Roll Or Just Pass The Test? Grade Your Agency Paper And Upgrade Your Teaching Model To Generate Happier Employees And Better Patient Outcomes!

Chronic Disease EducationThe most important thing in chronic disease education is the overall program evaluation. If you don’t know the overall efficacy of your chronic disease program, then you will miss the mark.  Let’s look at how to grade your own test and make the program better than ever!

5 Things Need To Be On Your Grade Card:

In order to evaluate your chronic disease education, you need to know what to put on your grade card. Here are 5 things that are a definite must to know if you pass the class.

  • What Clinical Disciplines Are Involved?: You should be able to say nursing, PT, OT, and Home Health Aide.  If you can’t, then your program won’t thrive.
  • How Often Do You Train?: If the answer is “on hire”, then you will also struggle. Even though this is important in the orientation process, it is a continual learning process.
  • Do You Connect The Education With Managing The Disease?: This is the key to the kingdom. All disciplines must understand how all pieces to disease management fit together. It is not about hearing symptoms and staff memorizing lists. That misses the point. It is about complex problem management.
  • Do You Include Contract Staff?: Agencies often invest in education for employees, but not the contracted entities that provide service to the patients. This costs you a lot more in the long run.
  • How Often Do Your Clinical Disciplines Communicate Between Each Other?: Is it once a week? Or, maybe it is at admission and discharge only? See how often and the quality of the communication? Is it based upon improvement and optimal functioning?

Let Us Help Put It All Together!:

At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we can help you advance chronic disease education and management to the next level.  We offer online education at Chronic Disease University. Call us at 206-721-5091 or contact us online to see how our program can get you the grade card you want!

 

You Know Oasis Is Important. This Isn’t New. But How Do You Keep Your Clinicians Excited About It? The Gold Is In Your Trainer!

win-winOasis… Oasis… Oasis… Do you ever find it hard to get staff excited about it?  Then, you are not alone. Keeping things fresh year after year can be frustrating. Let’s look at ways to make your training memorable.

Common Things That Can Make Training Ineffective:

After years of completing Oasis, it can be something that long-term nursing staff can dread. It can also be way too much for new nurses. Here are 3 common things that can make even the best intentions change the outcome of your training:

  •  New Nurses With Seasoned Nurses: This can be a really tough mix. You have long term nurses who have seen a question answered a certain way in one version answered differently in another. New nurses are a clean slate. It can be tough approach the nursing team with the exact same training.
  • Same Method Of Training: So many times, you can have a trainer that methodically reads guidance to staff. Staff begin to zone out and think about all the work they still have to get done that day.
  • No Real-Life Example: Nothing is better than having the nurses see the Oasis completed properly while objectively assessing a real patient. When it is possible to have this type of hand-on example used, it is so much better. When it isn’t, consider getting consent from a patient willing to have the assessment video-taped for training purposes.

Ok, So What Really Makes The Difference:

The proof is in the trainer. You need someone who understands the tool both clinically and financially.  That type of trainer is excited about how all the pieces of the puzzle fit together. If you approach staff with this trainer, then training looks so much better. That person needs to be a nurse. This makes the training more credible to those receiving it. This type of trainer puts everything together from the Oasis to how it all fits in the care plan. It becomes a win-win situation for nurses and for administration.

We Can Help!:

At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have onsite Oasis training by the nurse that loves the puzzle of Oasis and how everything fits together.  Our Oasis training nurses are certified coders that bring the coding piece into the mix effectively.  Call us at 206-721-5091 or contact us online to see if our trainers can make a difference for you!

Ring The Bell! School’s Back In! Making Your Chronic Disease Education UntouchableTo The Rest!

chronic disease educationHome care always changes. Agencies deal with changes in reimbursement and regulations all the time. There is one thing that doesn’t change; the need for chronic disease education.  Let’s look at some ways a great program can make you more marketable and help your bottom line.

Wait, Doesn’t Extra Education Cost Me Money?:

As an administrator, you constantly deal with the pressure of finances.  It comes with the territory. But, look at chronic disease education from the big picture. If you have an internal program that leads to better outcomes and better case management, then training cost is minimal compared to the alternative. So, the answer would ultimately be no. Education and incorporating disease management from your agency perspective is home health gold.

So, What Happens First?:

Pick your educational program and start with home care aides. This discipine is most often skipped in the process of chronic disease management. Aides spend the most time with the patient and yet are the least taught by agencies when it comes to chronic disease. This is the first thing that needs to change. The home care aide is much more capable of being part of the goal-oriented care plan regarding chronic disease. Here’s the other thing; the paradigm shift needs the buy-in from your skilled clinicians. If skilled disciplines know you have well-educated aides, then it is easier to make them part of multidisciplinary care plan goals.

Assess Communication:

This cannot be stressed enough when it comes to chronic disease management. Agencies struggle with coordination of care. Clinicians are busy trying to provide care, document in an EMR, and follow up with physicians. The increased communication will actually allot more time for the nurse and therapist in the long run. If communication increases, then additional visits are not completed.  Think about the difference in the number of visits when the therapist and nurse complete the cycle of care with the aide versus the alternative.  Have the aide complete all tasks within scope of practice. Make coordination of care a meaningful discussion of goals and how to get the patient there.  Each discipline needs to play a part.

Make The Investment And Let Us Help:

At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have comprehensive chronic disease education for your aides. This allows online use when it is convenient for each individual staff member. Check it out at Chronic Disease University or call us today at 206-721-5091 to see how it can work for you!