Butler Health System program aims for improved home care for high-risk patients
The Butler Health System is starting a program that aims to improve care and lower readmissions of high-risk patients.
The Primary Care Resource Center at Butler Memorial Hospital seeks to ease the transition from inpatient to outpatient care for patients with conditions that put them at risk of returning to the hospital, said Jana Panther, spokeswoman for Butler Health System.
Center staff will monitor patients admitted to the hospital with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, congestive heart failure and coronary artery disease. Patients will be educated about their condition, medications, treatment and receive a care plan to follow at home.
Center staff will make follow-up phone calls and conduct home visits as needed, Panther said.
“People leave, and if they don't take care of themselves, they end up back here too soon,” Panther said. “We're trying to keep that from happening.”
The center opened in early August, but the health system has scheduled a grand opening reception from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Wednesday at 5 North, Butler Memorial Hospital. Visitors can tour the center from 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. that day.
The Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative, a regional health care collaborative, received a $10 million grant from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation to establish the primary care resource centers, said Dr. Keith Kanel, chief medical officer for the initiative.
The initiative chose Butler Memorial Hospital as one of six local hospital systems to receive a center. The others are Sharon Regional Health System, Wheeling Hospital, Uniontown Hospital, Indiana Regional Medical Center and Monongahela Valley Hospital.
The six resource centers will save about $41 million during the three years of the grant, according to the Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative.
“Butler is one of the leaders in the northern suburbs of Pittsburgh. They always have been, and we've always admired their work,” Kanel said. “We're always looking for ways to collaborate with Butler.”
Hospital readmissions are costly for insurers. Medicare, the federal government's insurance program for the elderly, wants readmissions to decline. In October, it began cutting reimbursements to hospitals with too many patients who returned with the same problem in 30 days or less.
The new Butler center is staffed by three nurse-care managers, a pharmacist and administrative support, all of whom are paid through the grant, Kanel said.
“We created these positions with the intent that this is the future of health care,” he said.
Rachel Farkas is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-779-6902 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.