Quality Outcomes
One agency’s development and implementation of standardized care paths has helped it reduce patient rehospitalizations and increase revenue by allowing clinicians to take on more patients.
A QAPI Land board game. Guidance about 5-star ratings posted in agency bathroom stalls. The “Outcomes Owl.” These are just a few outside-the-box strategies one home health company used to dramatically increase its star ratings in quality. The efforts paid off, as four of its 34 locations have improved to 5 stars — including Mays Home Care’s location in Tulsa, Okla. That location improved several stars to become a 5-star agency when Home Health Compare was updated April 12.
Most agencies that earned 5-star ratings in quality of care when Home Health Compare was updated April 12 have been standout agencies for a long time.
Home health agencies should use the following strategy to improve their star rating in quality.
By probing deeper into its quality data and using a strategy of peer auditing, one Washington-based agency was able to identify weaknesses and improve on all the value-based purchasing outcome measures.
The number of agencies that received five stars for quality of care has increased every quarter since the ratings were first released — and that trend continued when CMS released the latest ratings April 12.
If your agency still has a long way to go to prepare for CMS’ new Home Health Conditions of Participation (CoPs) involving Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement (QAPI), a good way to start is to review your agency’s CASPER outcome reports.

Agencies should pay close attention to caregivers’ health. It could improve outcomes. Here’s a snapshot of caregivers, according to the 2016 Caregiving in the U.S. executive summary by AARP and National Alliance for Caregiving.

Agencies have improved by more than 1% since last quarter on eight different measures on Home Health Compare. Each of those measures is included within value-based purchasing.
Home health agencies in 2017 will spend more time and money than before on training and staffing dedicated to improving care quality, data show.


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