As a long-term acute-care hospital, Kindred Hospital Melbourne has the time to provide the level care needed to reduce each patient’s chances of re-admission
As a health care system focused on treating medically complex patients who need extended recovery time in an acute-care setting, from 2008-2011, Kindred Healthcare’s hospitals were able to reduce patient re-hospitalizations by 8.4 percent. And fortunately for Space Coast residents who may require extended acute care, Melbourne is home to a Kindred Healthcare hospital.
“Kindred Hospital Melbourne is a long-term acute-care (LTAC) hospital. The term that is most important in our name is ‘hospital,’” says Mary Jo Hild, director of sales and marketing at Kindred Hospital Melbourne. “A patient comes to us after an acute episode of illness and we take the time to provide the care needed to enhance recovery and optimize the patient’s condition, thereby reducing his or her chance of re-admission.”
Hild explains although the basics of Medicare benefits remain the same, how Medicare benefits are being utilized is changing. “There are multiple levels of care (called the health care continuum) and maximizing the utilization of those levels helps to decrease re-admissions,” she says.
Kindred hospitals play a part in the post-acute continuum of care. A medically complex patient can progress through several of these levels before going home. For example, a patient’s progression could follow this path: acute hospitalization, then LTAC (like Kindred Hospital Melbourne), then rehabilitation at a rehabilitation hospital or short-term rehabilitation in a skilled nursing facility, then home with assistance from home health care providers.
By moving patients through the continuum, they receive specialized care at each level, progressing quickly toward recovery. “The bottom-line benefit is for a patient’s sustained overall health care recovery from an illness or surgery,” says Hild.
With acute episodes of illness, hospital stays are shorter than they used to be, and patients are discharged in frailer states, Hild further explains. Approximately 20 percent of Medicare patients are re-admitted within 30 days of discharge. The rates of 30-day re-admissions according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality are as follows: heart attack, 19.9 percent; heart failure, 24.7 percent; and pneumonia, 18.3 percent.
Congestive heart failure, heart attack and pneumonia account for the majority of Medicare re-admissions due to recurrence, complications and poor adherence to medications and post-hospital regimens.
ACCEPTING MEDICARE’S CHALLENGE
“Medicare has challenged our health care system to improve the re-admission rate, which translates to improving our patient’s sustained overall health care recovery from an illness or surgery,” explains Hild. “And Kindred Healthcare has accepted that Medicare challenge.
“Education is key,” she continues. “Patients, doctors and hospital case managers need to understand exactly what care we provide and the acuity level of the patients we can admit.”
By reducing re-hospitalization rates by 8.4 percent from 2008 -2011, Kindred Healthcare as a whole is slowly improving the statistics. Kindred Healthcare benchmarks its quality indicators against national averages and is proud to report that most of its quality indicators fare better than the national averages.
“Our length of stay is longer, hence the name ‘long-term acute,’ averaging 25 to 30 days. This enables medically complex patients to recover and be in a less frail state when discharged,” says Hild.
Kindred Hospital Melbourne’s admissions can include but are not limited to the following diagnosis:
• Post-cardiac surgery
• Congestive heart failure
• Valvular heart disease
• Congenital heart disease
• Post-myocardial infarct with complications
• Peripheral vascular disease
• Aspiration pneumonia
• Exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
• Respiratory failure
Kindred Hospital Melbourne’s services include, but are not limited to:
• Licensed as an LTAC
• Designed to treat new or acute exacerbation of chronic illness
• Critical-care units for complex or unstable patients
• On-site/bedside dialysis services
• Attending physician rounds daily
• Rehabilitation services ranging from low tolerance to acute
• Radiology/CT scan/ABG lab/surgery suites
• Dedicated wound-care team
• Registered clinical dietician
• Comprehensive case management team
“When your physician or case manager comes to you and says, ‘I’d like to transfer you or your family member to Kindred Hospital,’ realize it is for two reasons. The first is to give you or your family member the time to recover in a hospital setting, and the second is to prevent a re-admission,” explains Hild. “It is a good thing.”
For more information on Kindred Hospital Melbourne or to arrange a tour, call (321) 409-4000 or visit KHMelbourne.com.