Avoidable Re-admissions: Diagnosing the Problem

January 27, 2020

Written By Greg Clute

Chief Financial Officer specializing in financials, reporting, planning, project management, client relations and business development.

Health care providers understand that excessive hospital readmission rates pose a direct threat to patient outcomes. On top of this, high rates also inflict problems to a hospital’s financial well-being, particularly in a value-based reimbursement environment.

According to the Agency for Healthcare research and quality, hospital costs in the past year were recorded to have totaled roughly $41 billion for patients readmitted within 30 days of initial discharge – making re-admissions one of the costliest problems to handle in the health care industry. That said, there’s certainly a need to diagnose and treat this problem as Medicare spends nearly $27 billion in readmission costs annually with nearly $17 billion being spent on avoidable re-admissions after discharge.

Due to the excessive amount of federal and hospital dollars being devoted to paying off readmission costs, CMS developed a value-based reimbursement program to penalize hospitals for high readmission rates – the results exhibited an 8 percent decrease in re-admissions nationally between the years 2010 and 2015. However, this decrease in re-admissions came at a price for some hospitals as CMS enacted $564 million worth of penalties across 2,500 hospitals in 2017. Of the top recorded Medicare re-admissions, the following conditions have yielded the highest rates:

• Congestive heart failure, non-hypertensive, with 134,500 re-admissions

• Septicemia, not including labor, with 92,900 re-admissions

• Pneumonia, not caused by STIs or tuberculosis, with 88,800 re-admissions

• Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and bronchiectasis, with 77,900 re-admissions

• Cardiac dysrhythmias, with 69,400 re-admissions

HealtheFirst has pinpointed these issues within our modern transitional care and have taken steps toward eliminating unwanted variables from the process. We bring together patient profiles, secure patient information, integrated secure communication, timelines, milestones, forms specific to your company, notes, medical history and files all into the most user-friendly interface.  We even track revenue and cost in real time. HealtheFirst’s management platform helps to optimize business efficiencies (lower costs-higher efficiencies-happier and more informed staff) while we reduce readmission costs, expedite reimbursements, simplify payroll, and improve patient outcomes. Take the time for a demo to see how much better your life and business can be with HealtheFirst.

Articles You May Also Like