Jun 18, 2015, 05:33 ET
BALTIMORE, June 18, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Academy of Home Care Medicine is pleased that CMS has announced the exceptionally good news: Independence at Home Medicare Demonstration practices (IAH) succeeded in improving care and lowering costs by $25 million in the first performance year.
IAH, an Academy legislative initiative, uses a targeted, proven model to reduce costs among the 5% of Medicare beneficiaries with multiple chronic conditions who account for 50% of Medicare's costs. These first year results are consistent with the Home-Based Primary Care program operated by Department of Veterans' Affairs for more than 30 years and in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. While most, but not all, of the IAH practices achieved savings, every IAH practice contributed to the success of the IAH Demonstration, and all believe they will show savings when the year 2 results are released later this year. We congratulate all of the practices for their hard work in this Demonstration, and look forward to hearing of even better results when the results of years 2 and 3 are announced.
We agree with CMS Acting Administrator Slavitt who, in the CMS Press Release announcing the first year results noted:
"These results support what most Americans already want-- that chronically ill patients can be better taken care of in their own homes. This is a great common sense way for Medicare beneficiaries to get better quality care with smarter spending from Medicare."
CMS reported that IAH medical practices saved over $25 million during the first performance year – an average of $3,070 per participating beneficiary – while delivering high quality patient care in the home. Medicare beneficiaries whose care is with an IAH practice also benefit as they:
- Have fewer hospital readmissions within 30 days;
- Have follow-up contact from their provider within 48 hours of a hospital admission, hospital discharge, or emergency department visit;
- Have their medications identified by their provider within 48 hours of discharge from the hospital;
- Have their preferences documented by their provider; and
- Use inpatient hospital and emergency department services less for conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, asthma, pneumonia, or urinary tract infection.
Congress' has taken action to ensure that the IAH Demonstration continues, with Senate passage of a two-year extension of this proven and successful demonstration led by Finance committee Ranking Member Wyden (D-OR) and Senator Isakson (R-GA). The House Ways and Means committee, in a bipartisan and unanimous vote, also approved the two-year extension of the IAH demonstration. The House version of the bill is being championed by Representatives Burgess (R-TX), Roskam (R-IL), and Thompson (D-CA).
The Academy and our many allies now eagerly await passage of the extension on the House floor so the Demonstration can continue. This legislation must be passed if the success of the IAH program in reducing costs by providing better care is to continue. To view the CMS press release go to http://cms.gov/Newsroom/MediaReleaseDatabase/Press-releases/2015-Press-releases-items/2015-06-18.html.
The American Academy of Home Care Medicine is the leading national professional organization for those providing home care medicine services. For further information about the Academy, see www.aahcm.org. For further information about IAH see www.IAHNow.com.
Since 1988, the American Academy of Home Care Medicine has served the needs of thousands of physicians, related professionals and agencies interested in improving care of patients in the home. Academy Board member volunteers and members work to reduce barriers and enhance practice education. Notable successes include fostering increased reimbursement, sponsoring multiple educational and scientific seminars and providing the practice community with a variety of helpful publications. Membership is open to those having a professional interest in home care medicine, including physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, medical directors, residents, students, home care agencies and corporations. For more information, contact the Academy's headquarters at 410-962-0565 or visit their website at www.aahcm.org.
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SOURCE American Academy of Home Care Medicine
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