National Home Healthcare Leaders Applaud Ohio Proposal for Coordinated Care to Reduce Costs, Improve Patient Care

As lawmakers look to improve healthcare delivery, Ohio plan encourages the use of clinically advanced and cost-effective home healthcare.

WASHINGTON, April 12, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare – a national coalition representing more than 1,500 community- and hospital-based home health agencies nationwide – today praised the Integrated Care Delivery System (ICDS) proposal submitted by Ohio's Office of Health Transformation to better coordinate care for the state's sickest and most costly Medicare and Medicaid patients.  As part of its proposal, Ohio will enable more seniors to receive high-quality, cost-effective medical care in their own homes.

Ohio's ICDS plan would change the way healthcare is delivered and coordinated for the state's Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries.  The plan aims to more effectively coordinate the Medicare and Medicaid benefits received by dually-eligible Ohioans to ensure the delivery of the most clinically appropriate and cost-effective care.  Tellingly, one of the cornerstones - and measures for success - of the pilot program is its ability to increase use of home healthcare by Ohio's 182,000 Medicare and Medicaid patients.

"We applaud Ohio's leaders for advancing innovative pro-senior healthcare delivery reforms," said Eric Berger, CEO of the Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare.  "Enabling seniors to remain at home allows for better chronic condition management, improved outcomes, and lower costs.  This plan is right for Ohio patients and Ohio taxpayers."

The Partnership has also praised Ohio Governor John Kasich (R-OH) and the Ohio PASSPORT program, which provides comprehensive support so that seniors can receive care in their home instead of costly institutional settings.  Governor Kasich has stated, "I can't think of anything more important to a senior than to be able to stay in their home with assistance rather than being put in a facility that they're not comfortable with."

"Ohio's programs are models for improving healthcare delivery and reducing costs, and we encourage lawmakers in Washington – and in all states – to consider how they can leverage similar reforms to strengthen our healthcare system nationwide," added Berger.

Analysis of Medicare spending illustrates the significant impact that home healthcare can have on healthcare spending.  A 2011 report by Avalere Health, LLC determined that home healthcare use by patients with chronic illnesses resulted in a $2.81 billion reduction in post-hospitalization Medicare Part A spending and an estimated 20,426 fewer hospital readmissions between October 2006 and September 2009.

Skilled home healthcare is clinically advanced, cost-effective and patient preferred. Research shows that 89 percent of American seniors prefer to age in place, stay home and remain independent. Nationwide, approximately 3.4 million Medicare beneficiaries receive skilled home healthcare services to treat illnesses related to acute, chronic or rehabilitative needs.

The Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare was established in 2010 to assist government officials in ensuring access to quality home health services for all Americans. Representing more than 1,500 community- and hospital-based home health agencies nationwide, the Partnership is dedicated to developing innovative reforms to improve the program integrity, quality, and efficiency of home healthcare for our nation's seniors.  To learn more, visit www.homehealth4america.org.

SOURCE Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare



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