Acute Hospital Care at Home Creates a Way to Relieve Hospital Capacity Issues While Providing the Same Level of Care to Patients

This allows clinicians to go back to the way that care was delivered many years ago, with clinicians visiting the patients in the comfort of their own home while providing similar services to what they would receive in the hospital. While the waiver is not permanent, many believe that it will become permanent, with the hope that other insurance companies will follow in the wake. 

As of 4/5/21, 53 health systems, 116 hospitals in 29 states are currently included within the program. Some of the services that they are able to provide include labs, IV antibiotics, a variety of standard view x-rays without contrast, infusions, echocardiograms, and EKG’s. Typically a doctor comes out once a day, while the nurse may come twice a day or more as needed. In some cases patients might get more attention then they get at the hospital, as clinicians can spend up to an hour with the patient, ensuring that patients are satisfied with their care. Studies have shown that this method of care delivery also saves an average of $2000 per patient per hospitalization or close to 20% savings.

This has helped immensely treating COVID positive patients at home. It helps with hospital capacity issues, while potentially reducing hospital-acquired infections as well as delirium as they’re comfortable with their surroundings. It could also reduce caregiver stress and burnout as it’s a much different environment than working in the hospital. When admitted, patients are typically given a blood pressure cuff, pulse oximeter and thermometer. Patients can interact with a clinician 24 hours a day with a mobile medicine app. 

Organizations who are interested in adding a program to their facility should answer the following questions:

  • Are you experiencing hospital capacity issues?
  • Have you already established any population health / home care delivery capabilities?
  • Do you have staff (physicians, nurses) that would be willing to work in the home environment?
  • Do you receive a large volume of patients that would be eligible for this type of care?

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