Taking On the Readmissions Challenge

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media , October 16, 2013

Mina Ubbing
President and CEO
Fairfield Medical Center
Lancaster, Ohio

>Mina Ubbing

Mina Ubbing President and CEO
Fairfield Medical Center

The toughest challenge is that the penalty goes to the hospital provider but the control over what happens to the patient is dispersed among a number of places.

We have been working closely with our local healthcare network, which includes skilled nursing facilities, home care agencies, or long-term acute care facilities, and our community health center. Some of the challenge is getting the patient seen for follow-up with a primary care physician. We have two primary care residency clinics that we make available for that patient who either does not have a primary care physician or who can't be seen in a timely manner to try to alleviate that part of the problem.

We have worked with our nursing homes, with some of the specific diagnoses that this covers but more generally to make sure that their skills and talents are optimized in the care of specific patients. We work with our emergency room physicians. We work with our hospice agency collaboratively. I have heard ideas about collaborating with ambulance companies to do some quick triage as to whether the patient really needs to come to the hospital or if there are other stabilization opportunities that can be provided.

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