To keep you informed on news, innovation, education and advocacy issues around home-based care, we’ve pulled together these important headlines.
NHPCO Hospice Industry Advocacy
The new Quality Connections Program will be available at no extra cost to the approximately 1,100 members of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization and will use didactic instruction and evidence-based tools to drive performance and the development of organization-wide best practices for hospice agencies. Read the full article here.
NHPCO is pushing President Biden to prioritize hospice funding for bereavement care, flexibility on respite care rules and audits, COVID vaccine availability, as well as the need for a community-based palliative care benefit and a delay for the Medicare Advantage hospice carve-in. Read the rest of the article here.
Call for a National Grief Strategy
NHPCO and SWHPN (Social Work in Hospice & Palliative Care Network) have called on President Biden to create a National Grief Strategy to increase grief literacy for the country following the COVID-19 pandemic. Read the full article here.
Pain Management Guidelines for Children
The World Health Organization is expected to release updated guidelines for the management of pain in seriously ill children on February 1st. The new guidelines will replace those outlined by the organization in 2012 and will directly inform hospice and palliative care agencies on proper pain management protocols for pediatric patients on hospice and palliative care. Read the rest of the article here.
End-of-Life Care Satisfaction
New data from the National Health and Aging Trends Study (NHATS) indicates that place of death may be an important quality measure for end-of-life care. Families of patients who ended their lives at home reported higher satisfaction with their loved one’s care than patients who died in a hospital and hospice utilization is the strongest predictor of whether a patient spends their final days in their homes. Read the rest of the article here.
Hospice Aids the Decline in Suicide Rates for Cancer Patients
A recent study has indicated that: “Increased access to psychosocial, palliative, and hospice care plays an important role in contributing to the decline in suicide among cancer patients.” Read the rest of the article here.
COVID & Value-Based Care
COVID challenges have led leaders within the home care industry to lose clarity around important metrics that will drive the transition to value-based care. Read the rest of the article here.
The National Partnership for Hospice Innovation NPHI called on policymakers to address inconsistencies on the state and federal level with vaccine distribution. Read the full article here.
The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 included key pieces of hospice legislation to help agencies get through the COVID-19 crisis. The legislation included the Rural Access to Hospice Act, the Helping Our Senior Populations in Comfort Environments Act and an extension of the temporary suspension of payment sequestration. Read the rest of the article here.
Staffing shortages in the face of COVID-19 have led several hospices to ramp up staffing support and provide more access to educational sessions on self-care, coping skills, mindfulness and resilience and create new paid time off and work-life balance efforts. Read the full article here.
The hospice, home health and home care sector saw a significant uptick in merger and acquisition transactions during the fourth quarter of 2020. Among the various segments of the health care industry, hospice continuous to be the most active. Hospice M&A is not expected to slow during 2021. Read the full article here.
HOSPICE CUSTOMERS IN THE NEWS
St. Croix Hospice
Hospice News interviewed Mandy Cogswell, chief clinical officer of St. Croix Hospice about their vaccine advocacy efforts and the response of their staff to the COVID-19 vaccine. Read the full article here.
After his appointment to president and CFO of St. Croix Hospice, Stephen Phenneger met with Hospice News to discuss St. Croix’s plans for growth in 2021. Read the rest of the article here.
St. Croix Hospice launched a de novo location in Norfolk, Nebraska. The latest location is part of a growth strategy that has been doing well in spite of COVID-19. Read the full article here.
Traditions Health acquired two home health agencies in January: Traditions Home Care and Secure Home Care. The organization has also purchased two hospice agencies: Grace Hospice & Palliative Care and Heritage Hospice. Read the rest of the article here.
AccentCare & Seasons Hospice & Palliative Care
LHC Group, Inc.
According to LHC Group President Joshua Proffitt, Co-location growth will be part of the top strategic focus for the organization in 2021 and the foreseeable future. The company started of the year completing acquisitions of Grace Hospice, East Valley Hospice and East Valley Palliative Care. Read the 3 full articles here, here and here.
At the annual JP Morgan Healthcare Conference, LHC Group Chairman and CEO Keith Myers shared insights into the home health and hospice M&A market and the LHC Group’s performance during 2020. Read the rest of the article here.
“Hospices Need Resources to Bolster Bereavement Care” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 28, 2021
“NHPCO Launches Education Program to Improve Hospice Quality” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 28, 2021
“WHO Updates Pain Management Guidelines for Children in Hospice, Palliative Care” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 28, 2021
“Home-Based Patients Report Higher Satisfaction with End-of-Life Care” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 25, 2021
“COVID-19 Complicating Hospices’ Move towards Value-Based Care” By Holly Vossel, Published by Hospice News on January 26, 2021
“Palliative Care, Hospice Help Reduce Suicide Among Cancer Patients” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 24, 2021
“NHPCO Voices Hospice Priorities to Biden Administration” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 19, 2021
“NPHI: Vaccine Roll Out Needs New Approach” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 12, 2021
“NAHC Analysis Shows Progress from Federal COVID Relief, but More Likely Needed” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 11, 2021
“Hospice M&A Gained Momentum in Fourth Quarter 2020” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 19, 2021
“Fostering Hospice Staff Resilience during COVID-19” By Holly Vossel, Published by Hospice News on January 8, 2021
“Hospices Step Up to Vaccinate Staff for COVID-19” By Holly Vossel, Published by Hospice News on January 15, 2021
“CFO Phenneger: St. Croix Hospice Poised for Steady Growth” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 13, 2021
“LHC Group Builds New Pathways for Hospice Growth via JVs” By Holly Vossel, Published by Hospice News on January 13, 2021
“St. Croix Opens Nebraska De Novo” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 12, 2021
“Consolidation Accelerates as Home Health Operators Crash from Stimulus Sugar High” By Robert Holly, Published by Home Health Care News on January 13, 2021
“LHC Group Completes Three Acquisitions in Oklahoma and Arizona” By Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 5, 2021
“LHC Group Finalizes Three Acquisitions; A-1 Preferred Sources Buy On the Mark Services” By Robert Holly, Published by Home Health Care News on January 5, 2021
“Traditions Health Acquires 4 Agencies; Help at Home Buys Adaptive” By Robert Holly, Published by Home Health Care News on January 14, 2021
“AccentCare Expands Executive Team with New COO Chris Dimos” by Jim Parker, Published by Hospice News on January 7, 2021