By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Biotech Week In the wake of the sweeping Medicare payment system changes proposed last week by the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services (CMS), which come on top of an estimated $500 million in 2017 penalties to hospitals with higher-than-expected readmission rates, healthcare providers nationwide are scrambling to adapt. Meanwhile, in Florida, RescueTouch has developed a simple, cost-effective way for Medicare, hospitals, nurse agencies, home health agencies, health insurance companies, accountable care organizations and management services organizations to combat the costly problem of avoidable emergency care and readmissions: NurseAlert. The Florida NurseAlert Pilot Program is now accepting applications from healthcare providers based in Florida (see also RescueTouch).
NurseAlert is a patient care medical alert system similar to the nurse call button beside every hospital bed in the nationbut NurseAlert is designed for patients to quickly call for nurse assistance at home. That difference is key, because in allowing high-maintenance patients to access nursing advice and care from home, NurseAlert is able to drastically reduce the number of avoidable trips to the hospital.
Small enough to be worn around the neck or clipped securely to clothing, NurseAlert is a sophisticated two-way caller that allows the wearer to push a button and instantly be connected to the nurse agency scheduler or directly to the nurse, if the agency has configured the device to allow direct nurse communication. Just as importantly, NurseAlert allows the nurse agency scheduler or nurse to initiate contact with the patient. NurseAlert's innovative FallDetect and Geo Fence Alert features, for wearers at risk of falling and/or wandering, add another layer of protection for some of the most fragile patients.
It all means fewer unnecessary trips to the emergency room and fewer readmissions, particularly for the six conditionschronic lung disease, coronary artery bypass graft surgery, heart attack, heart failure, hip and knee replacements, and pneumoniathat rack up costly penalties from CMS when readmissions rise above expected rates.
"Addressing and reducing unnecessary readmissions and emergency registrations is of critical importance throughout the healthcare industry and even more so following last week's proposal by CMS," explained RescueTouch founder and EMT Scott Lepper. "The Florida NurseAlert Pilot Program will allow affected healthcare providers to document a measurable reduction in readmission rates while being immediately available to patients without a bunch of red tape or a long implementation period."
Each NurseAlert unit is completely self-contained and makes use of the existing 3G network to offer one-touch nationwide calling and text notifications containing the patient's name and GPS location as well as the date and time of the callanywhere in the U.S., whether the patient is traveling or at home. The long-lasting, rechargeable battery ensures the patient will never be without critical NurseAlert support.
Florida-based healthcare providers can apply to the Florida NurseAlert Pilot Program, designed to document actual reductions in avoidable admissions, by visiting http://floridanursealert.com. To see NurseAlert in action, request a free demo.
Keywords for this news article include: Hospital, Medicare, RescueTouch, Health Policy, Risk and Prevention.
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