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    VNA Home Health Hospice empowers clinical staff with Allscripts Homecare™

    December 4th, 2014

    As the homecare regulatory environment heated up in the late 2000s, many agencies took steps to transition from fee-for-service to value-based models of care. VNA Home Health Hospice (South Portland, Maine, U.S.A.) used Allscripts Homecare to prepare for the future of health care, and shared its story with us:


    Automated Communication Engine:

    Several factors spurred the VNA toward change, including regulatory pressure, acquisition by a larger health system and program growth. The former electronic medical record system was not able to keep pace with these changes.

    The team at VNA was not satisfied with its organizational structure, either. Admitting a patient required paperwork to travel from clinical staff, to the performance improvement department (known as the “fix-it” shop), then finally to the medical records department. It was especially cumbersome to conduct much of this work using paper forms.

    Clinical managers were supervising 25-30 direct care staff and were responsible for quality outcomes. But they didn’t have visibility to information they needed to improve outcomes. And the fix-it shop began running further and further behind schedule, delaying quality compliance.

    For its new system, VNA established guiding principles to improve its workflows. For example, it wanted to place more emphasis on the employee-manager relationship and evidence-based clinical guidelines, so clinical staff could deliver services more effectively.

    Operational efficiencies improve clinical and financial results

    In 2012 VNA started using Allscripts HomecareTM, Automated Communication Engine and AllDocs. Interdisciplinary team members re-organized workflows and really changed the culture of VNA. They designed workflows that kept quality review and the full knowledge about the patient’s care as close to the clinicians as possible. They also reallocated staff to more effectively balance quality review with daily tasks.

    Improved documentation and communication capabilities have given clinical managers greater visibility. With these new operational efficiencies, VNA has significantly reduced its hospitalization rate and achieved a number of clinical improvements. It has also improved financial results, just by shortening the billing cycle saved $150,000 annually.

    To read more about VNA’s success, you can download this free case study.

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    10 signs of transformation in a home health agency

    January 7th, 2014

    October 1, 2013 was an important milestone for privately owned home health agency, Health Resource Solutions (HRS) in Lombard, IL. With help from Allscripts HomecareTM, Allscripts Referral ManagementTM and Allscripts AllDocsTM, that was the day HRS officially went paperless.

    It’s just one example of a recent transformation at HRS. In a new case study, owner Glenn Steigbigel shares some of the ways Allscripts solutions have helped improve his organization, including:

    1. Better patient outcomes. 

    Improved several clinical outcomes in one year, including patient fall risk assessments by 3% and pressure ulcer risk assessments by 5%.

    2. More patients, less administrative cost.

    HRS increased its daily patient census 25%, while reducing overall administrative cost by 2%.

    3. Faster referral processing.

    Automating referrals shortened HRS time spent on each referral from 2 hours to 30 minutes.

    4. More complete assessments.

    The task system helped clinicians standardize documentation and ensure completion of the whole assessment.

    5. Better visibility to referrals.

    Steigbigel appreciates being able to track a referral’s progress through the system at any time.

    6. Improved access to information.

    When HRS receives referrals, it can scan information — such as index histories, orders, labs and consent forms – and attach it to the patient record. Clinicians can access this data from the field.

    7. Reduced staff turnover.

    Paperwork previously anchored nurse supervisors to the office. Now, they can support nurses and therapists in the field, improving retention.

    8. New relationships with other care programs.

    HRS partners with local universities on pilot transition of care programs. Steigbigel credits Allscripts solutions with providing capabilities HRS needed to participate.

    9. More accurate financial processes.

    Automated billing rules and visibility into open collection notes makes it easier for HRS to track and collect revenue.

    10. Better peace of mind.

    “All those ‘fire drills’ we had before are a thing of the past,” said Steigbigel. “That type of improvement in all of our professional and personal lives is something I cannot put a price on.”

     To learn more about improvements at Health Resource Solutions, read this case study.

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