Can You Keep Up With the Joneses?

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Karen Utterback By Karen Utterback 
Former Vice President, Product Marketing and Strategy, McKesson (Retired)

Home Health Agency Keeping Up with CompetitionThe expression “keeping up with the Joneses” takes on a whole new meaning in a healthcare context. Technology advances mean that best practices change frequently, making it difficult for clinicians to keep up. Regardless of how challenging it is continually to integrate new clinical information into your systems, patients and their families expect this level of currency. Furthermore, referral sources and payers are focused on using evidence-based outcomes to determine payment levels.

As we describe in our latest white paper, home health evidence-based practice (EBP) can position home health agencies to be highly competitive, with up-to-date methods and systems that help them successfully incorporate clinical changes. Agencies using EBP are positioned to compete with new care delivery models such as medical homes and accountable care organizations.

The Affordable Care Act describes six dimensions of healthcare performance for better patient care:

  • Safety
  • Effectiveness
  • Patient-centeredness
  • Timeliness
  • Efficiency
  • Equity

Using EBP as the foundation of clinical care is essential to reaching these goals. Indeed, basing care on evidence is the focus of four sections of the law (5301, 5405, 1311, and 3022).

As hospitals and physicians continue to change their organizations and clinical practices to stay relevant, it’s imperative that home care providers be seen as collaborators who deserve a place at the table. In April, nine prominent physician groups released lists of 45 common tests and treatments they say are often unnecessary and may even harm patients. Efforts like these should not only result in discussions about what’s best for the patient, but also lead to increased nurse-physician collaboration.

To read “The Role of Evidence-Based Clinical Practice in Emerging Care Models of Homecare,” by Caroline J. Humphrey, RN, of CJ Humphrey Associates and myself, please click here.

Or to stay up to date with the latest news and insight from the home health and hospice industry by subscribing to the McKesson Homecare Talk blog or liking us on Facebook.

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