Several areas within Baystate Health issue publications with useful information for health care professionals. Among these are:
- AlphaSights Magazine- A look at tomorrow's health care today at Baystate Medical Center. Each issue includes articles about new cutting edge procedures that Baystate physicians are performing.
- Physician newsletters from Baystate Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice. Each issue is devoted to a single home care or hospice-related topic:
- Telehealth Monitoring Improves Home Health Outcomes Including Rehospitalization - (June 2012) - In May 2010, we reported to you on the largest meta-analysis to date on the subject of telehealth monitoring.1 This meta-analysis concludes that telehealth monitoring, when added to usual care, creates an additional protective effect compared to usual care alone.
- Stroke Rehabilitation: In-Home Rehabilitation Therapy As Effective as High-Tech Facility Training - (May 2012) - In-home physical therapy for stroke rehabilitation accomplish-es results equal to body-weight supported treadmill training according to the largest stroke rehabilitation study ever conducted in the U.S.
- Palliative Care Program: Options for the Terminally Ill - (April 2012) - In the world of Medicare defined home care programs, there exists a gap between the traditional home health program and the traditional hospice program. To qualify for hospice, a doctor must provide a prognosis of six months or less, and a patient cannot concurrently receive treatments that are curative in purpose.
- Home Visits Detect 62% More Medication Discrepancies - (Mar 2012) - A study published in the September issue of the Journal of Nursing Care Quality finds that adding in-home nurse visits to the medication reconciliation program detects 62% more medication discrepancies.
- Hospice Improves Quality of Life for Patients with Dementia - (Feb 2012) - This past August, the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society published a study examining the effects of hospice on the quality of life and quality of care received by patients dying of dementia (Teno J, Pedro L, Bozalo I, et al. Does hospice improve quality of care for persons dying from dementia? J Am Geriatr Soc. 2011; 59 (8): 1531-6.)
- Want Help Managing Telephone Calls to Your Office? - (Jan 2012) - Handling periods of high telephone call volumes is a management challenge for most doctors’ offices. Here’s an interesting fact that can help offices manage those callsbetter.
- For Primary Care Practitioners: Making Chronic Disease Management Easier - (Dec 2011) - Many practice guidelines for the management of chronic diseases are inconsistent with the time demands of a standard primary care practice. In a study published in the Annals of Family Medicine (Is there time for management of patients with chronic diseases in primary care? Ann Fam Med. 3(3): 209-214. 2005), Ostbye and colleagues calculated that managing just 10 of the top chronic diseases according to practice guidelines for a standard patient panel of 2,500 would require 10.6 hours of clinician time per day.
- What Makes Patients 284% More Likely to Enroll in Hospice? - (Nov 2011) - Answer: Receiving information about hospice from the doctor. John Thomas of the Yale University School of Medicine and colleagues followed 215 older adults with
advanced cancer, COPD, or heart failure.
- Advantages of Home Health - (Oct 2011) - There are a few options that Medicare offers beneficiaries who need skilled care for recovery from illness. Patients can stay in a hospital, they can go to a rehab facility, they can receive outpatient physical therapy, or they can even self-manage at home.
- Opioid Use Has No Negative Effect on Survival (Sept 2011) - The Journal of the American Medical Directors Association recently published a study examining the effects of opioid use on survival in a hospice setting.
- Healing & Preventing Recurrences of Pressure Ulcers (Aug 2011) - The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey found that community dwelling seniors account for 20% of all pressure ulcers – more than 600,000 cases per year. By utilizing Baystate Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice (BVNAH), physicians and families can effectively manage these situations at home.
- Reversing the Progression of Geriatric Disability (July 2011) - A study published in the American Journal of Public Health shows how professionally guided home exercise programs can significantly reduce long-standing disability in geriatric patients while achieving 89% compliance.1
- Hospice Utilization for Heart Disease (Jun 2011) - A study comparing hospice utilization for cancer to hospice utilization for heart disease revealed the latter has increased 131%.
- Stroke Rehabilitation (May 2011) - Stroke patients discharged early from the hospital who receive home-based rehabilitation are more likely to be independent.
- Hospice Correlates with Longer Survival (Apr 2011) - A study published in Gynecologic Oncology this past September adds to the growing body of evidence showing a correlation between hospice care and longer survival.
- Recognizing the Home Health Candidate (Mar 2011) - Profiles of the many individuals and health conditions that would benefit from a home health referral instead of a hospitalization.
- Medicare Changes Home Health Eligibility - What doctors need to know to get Home Health for their patients in 2011. Starting January 1, a patient must have a face-to-face encounter with the doctor (or a designated professional working with the doctor) within 90 days or before 30 days after the hom ehealth start of care.
- Palliative Care Concurrent with Oncologic Care (Nov 2010) - A study in The New England Journal of Medicine compared palliative care plus oncologic care to oncologic care alone demonstrated that the addition of palliative care resulted in greater survival rates.
- Nutritional Recommendations (Oct 2010) - A study recently published in shows that Americans can be particularly non-compliant with dietary instructions. Even after acute coronary syndrome, North Americans followed dietary instructions for 30 days 47% of the time, according to self-reporting.
- When to Discuss Advance Care Planning (Sept 2010) - It is advantageous to discuss goals of care and advance care planning while patients are still well enough to participate fully in their own decision making. Although 99% of patients with COPD surveyed said they wanted to discuss advance directives with their physician, fewer than 20% had done so.
- CDC Emphasizes Areas for Improvement in Diabetes Management (Aug 2010) - CDC study shows that:
• 1 in 3 people with diabetes have poor blood pressure control
• 1 in 5 have poor glucose control
• 2 in 5 have poor cholesterol control.
- Surgical Site Infections (July 2010) - Study finds that SSI triples the mortality rate (15.3% vs. 5.2%), increases hospital charges by an average of $41,124, and increases the rate of hospital re-admission by more than 400%.
- Underutilization of Hospice Care (June 2010) - A growing body of evidence demonstrates that hospice provides a high quality of care with high satisfaction levels and a number of benefits including improved pain management, longevity equal to or greater than patients pursuing curative measures, improved bereavement outcomes, better overall satisfaction, and lower mortality rates among family members of patients who received hospice care, but still there are factors obstructing better hospice utilization.
- The Largest Meta-Analysis to Date on Telehealth vs. Usual Care for Heart Failure (May 2010) - Researchers concluded that telehealth monitoring provides an additional protective effect compared to usual care.
- Fall Prevention (Apr 2010) - Every year, one third of community-dwelling seniors experience an accidental fall. Treatment for fall injuries suffered by senior citizens makes up 11% of all emergency department visits (2.1 million visits per year). Inasmuch as this situation represents a significant risk to seniors and many of these falls are preventable, proactive measures to protect seniors from fall injuries should be considered.
- Palliative Care (Mar 2010) - In the world of Medicare defined home care programs, there exists a gap between the traditional home health program and the traditional hospice program. Many patients who might benefit from aspects of hospice service cannot enter the hospice program because they are pursuing curative treatments, they have a prognosis of greater than six months, or they are not ready for the hospice program for personal reasons. The BVNAH can help bridge that gap.
- Homebound Status (Feb 2010) - Uncertainty around the definition of homebound may sometimes prevent eligible patients from receiving beneficial home health services. Medicare’s definition of homebound is less restrictive than the word itself may imply. Some of your patients may be eligible for medically-necessary home health services that they are not currently receiving.
- Physician Care Plan Oversight (Jan 2010) - Many physicians have Medicare patients with home health or hospice services. However, most physicians do not submit for the reimbursement that they are entitled to for their efforts in managing the care. Baystate Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice (BVNAH) can help doctors make sure they receive maximum possible reimbursement for the valuable services they provide.
- Health Sciences Library in the Chestnut Building at Baystate Medical Center is a comprehensive, up-to-date source of publications issued by Baystate Health as well as books and article by Baystate physicians.