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CMS National Conference on Care Transitions. December 3, 2010. Project BOOST. Mark V. Williams, MD, FACP, FHM Professor & Chief, Division of Hospital Medicine Northwestern Univ. Feinberg School of Medicine Principal-Investigator, Project BOOST

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Cms national conference on care transitions
CMS National Conference on Care Transitions

December 3, 2010

Project boost

Project BOOST

Mark V. Williams, MD, FACP, FHM

Professor & Chief, Division of Hospital Medicine

Northwestern Univ. Feinberg School of Medicine

Principal-Investigator, Project BOOST

Tina Budnitz, MPH

Project Director, Project BOOST



The John A. Hartford Foundation

A problem for a long time
A Problem for a long time


Rosenthal, J. M. and D. B. Miller "Providers have failed to work for continuity." Hospitals 53(10): 79-83. Continuity of patient care between different health care settings has been advocated for nearly 20 years, but little has been done to affect it. The study described here emphasizes the current lack of effort by health care providers in hospitals and nursing homes to find a workable solution.

Rates of Rehospitalization within 30 Daysafter Hospital Discharge

Jencks S, Williams MV, Coleman EA. et al. N Engl J Med 2009;360:1418-1428

Harlan M. Krumholz, MD, SM research group

  • Observational study of 6,955,461 Medicare FFS hospitalizations for HF; 1993 and 2006, with 30-day f/u.

    • Mean age = 80

    • 52% Htn, 38% DM, 37% COPD

  • LOS 8.8 days down to 6.3

  • 30 day readmission increased from 17.2% to 20.1%

    • Post-discharge mortality increased from 4.3% to 6.4%

  • Discharges to SNF increased from 13% to 20%

    • Discharge to home decreased from 74% to 67%

  • In-hospital mortality declined from 8.5% to 4.3%

  • 30-day mortality declined from 12.8% to 10.7%

Hospital discharge historically
Hospital Discharge - historically

“Random events connected to highly variable actions with only a remote possibility of meeting implied expectations.”

Roger Resar, MD

Agent of Tremendous Change and Global Innovation Seeker

Luther Midelfort – Mayo Health System

Senior Fellow, IHI

Advisory board

Social work

Case management

Clinical pharmacy

Geriatric medicine

Geriatric nursing

Health IT

Blue Cross/Blue Shield

United Health

Health systems





National Consumer’s League

Other content experts

Advisory Board

Chair: Eric Coleman, MD, MPH

Co-Chair: Mark Williams, MD

with organizational representatives from:

Key components

BOOST Tools & Intervention

Comprehensive risk assessment – 8Ps

Patient centered discharge process

Teachback, Checklists

F/U appt scheduled prior to discharge

Standardized PCP communication

72 hour follow-up call for high risk patients

Mentored Implementation (flexible)

longitudinal support throughout planning and implementation

BOOST Community/Collaborative

Key Components

Boost tool the target

  • TARGET: Tool for Adjusting Risk: A Geriatric Evaluation for Transitions

    • 8P Risk Scale

      • Prior hospitalization

      • Problem medications

      • Psychological (depression)

      • Principal diagnosis

      • Polypharmacy

      • Poor health literacy

      • Patient support

      • Palliative Care

    • GAP: General Assessment of Preparedness

Each associated with risk specific interventions

The general assessment of preparedness the gap

Caregivers and social support circle for patient

Functional status evaluation completed

Cognitive status assessed


Substance abuse

Advanced care planning addressed and documented

The General Assessment of Preparedness: The GAP

  • Functional status

  • Cognitive status

  • Access to meds

  • Responsible party for ensuring med adherence prepared

  • Home preparation for patient’s arrival

  • Financial resources for care needs

  • Transportation home

  • Access (e.g. keys) to home

  • Understanding of dx, treatment, prognosis, follow-up and post-discharge warning S/S (using Teach Back)

  • Transportation to initial follow-up

At Discharge

On Admission

Nearing Discharge


  • Discharge Patient Education Tool


    • I had to stay in the hospital because: ________

    • The medical word for this condition is: _______

    • I also have these medical conditions:________




______After leaving the hospital, I will follow up with my doctors.


Primary Care Doctor: ________________________ Phone Number: ______________________

DATE: ______________, ___ ___, 200__ TIME: ____:____ __m

Specialist Doctor: ________________________ Phone Number: ______________________

DATE: ______________, ___ ___, 200__ TIME: ____:____ __m


______After leaving the hospital, I will show up for my tests.


Call your Primary Care Doctor for the following:


______After leaving the hospital, I will make these changes in my activity and diet.


Activity:________________________________________, because ________________________________

Diet:__________________________________________, because ________________________________

Mentored implementation
Mentored Implementation

  • Secret Sauce for Project BOOST

  • Target hospitalists at sites

    • QI effector arm

  • Mentor conference calls with hospital teams

    • Email follow-up

  • Mentor

    • experienced hospitalist with QI expertise

Boost community
BOOST Community

  • BOOST Network

    • E-mail, call between sites

    • BOOST listserv

    • Forum for sharing ideas, challenges, solutions

    • Shortens the learning curve

  • BOOST eNewsletter

    • Key milestones

    • BOOST updates

    • Site status reports, aggregate outcomes

Qualitative analysis
Qualitative Analysis

  • Facilitators to BOOST Implementation

    • Enhances care for patients

    • Site Mentor

    • Delivered value beyond BOOST

    • “I love your toolkit”

  • Barriers

    • Discharge process worse than realized

    • Competing demands

    • Lack of resources or administrative support

St mary s medical center st louis
St. Mary’s Medical Center(St. Louis)

  • 582 bed community teaching hospital

    • Pilot on 30 bed hospitalist unit

    • In 3 months:

      • 30 day readmissions declined from 12% to 7%

      • Patient satisfaction (very satisfied) increased from 52% to 68%

      • LOS decreased from 4.6 to 4.1 days