As providers, patients, and payers look for more cost-effective and efficient ways to provide health care, some are turning to telehealth as an option. Telehealth involves using electronic communication to provide healthcare information and services to a remote location. These services can include physical therapy.
Accountable care organizations were created to promote better care and better health for individuals and populations at a lower cost. They must identify providers that excel in areas not covered by ACOs themselves. In addition, providers must be accountable for their patients’ health, along with ACOs. That means providers have the financial incentives to do only what is absolutely needed.
In my years of working in rehabilitation, I have been in hundreds of independent and assisted living communities that cater to the older generation. I have seen beautiful fitness and pool areas that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars — and next to no use of these fitness centers. What good does this do for older people in our communities?
How do skilled nursing facilities, clinics and hospitals think about therapy? Focusing on patient satisfaction and revenue is a good start, but it is not enough. As therapy continues to be scrutinized by the government and insurance companies, it’s a good idea for administrators, directors of nursing and compliance staff to become more familiar with therapy operations.