Guest Columns

ASCP forum offers next steps

Frank Grosso
Frank Grosso

Today there is a substantial body of literature on the changing long-term and post-acute care industries. Trust me: If you Google the “changing face of long-term care,” you will get literally hundreds of scholarly articles. However, while we may have received the message that times are changing, do we have a plan for moving forward and achieving success in the new environment?

As the market dictates changes in the use of healthcare services and moves away from acute care to more economical models such as skilled nursing facilities and home care, transitions of care pose a huge challenge. This is in part because of the lack of communication among facilities, individual providers, and even between data systems. 

In April 2015, ASCP hosted its inaugural Forum in Baltimore, Maryland, to discuss this unprecedented environment and how health care professionals may take advantage of the “new day for post-acute care.”

In April 2016, ASCP plans to build on that event by hosting its 2016 Forum: The Business of Patient Care. During the Forum, presenters will examine elements of the new value-based reimbursement and discuss strategies for moving toward smooth patient transitions and improved outcomes. What can attendees expect?

Health system transformation

Paul McGann, M.D., chief medical officer for quality improvement at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, will use his hands-on perspective to describe how CMS' “Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative” is leading health care reimbursement from quantity to quality programs by emphasizing patient outcomes while supporting clinicians and business-practice development.

Data security

As we move toward value-based payments, we will need to learn how to share information with other practitioners while keeping patient data secure and private. Jodi Daniel, former director at the ONC, and 15-year veteran at the Department of Health and Human Services, will discuss system interoperability: "the need to know" vs. the need to keep data secure. She will cover the HIPPA privacy regulations and explain how to make sure your data is secure, including when you may be liable. She will also address the privacy and security issues related to health information technology and how the rules that secure personal health information affect system interoperability and efficient workflow across care settings.

Specialty drugs 

The tremendous growth in the specialty pharmacy market is attractive to some pharmacy operators while challenging to others. Along with the growth in new products has come an increase in the use of limited-distribution channels, creating significant clinical and economic challenges for nursing facility operators and their provider pharmacies. Gary Rice, RPh, MS, MBA, CSP, will discuss why manufacturers choose limited-distribution options, how specialty pharmacies compete for distributorship, and the challenges pharmacists and nursing facility operators face when acquiring, getting reimbursed for, and managing specialty medications in post-acute care.

Bundled payment for care improvement

Under the leadership of Todd Nunn, CEO, Peak Resources Inc., a North Carolina-based post-acute nursing home company, became one of the first operators to apply and receive approval to participate in CMS' Bundled Payment for Care Improvement (BPCI) demonstration project. Nunn and his team will discuss their decision to participate, the care improvement and efficiency strategies they used, and the challenges it posed to both clinical and financial operations.

I look forward to seeing those who will join us on April 11 and 12. Registration is currently open at ascp.com/forum.

Frank L. Grosso, RPh, is the CEO and executive director at the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists.
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Guest columns are written by long-term care industry experts, ranging from academics and thought leaders to administrators and CEOs.

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