Medical directors release guidance on transferring patients from acute care to skilled nursing facilities

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A new white paper developed by the American Medical Directors Association highlights successful and effective processes for transferring patients from acute care to skilled nursing facilities.

The goal of the paper is to “guide policies and procedures that enhance communication and support safe, patient-centered care” during transfer between sites of care. The current system of care transitions contains significant deficits, according to the paper. AMDA suggests some basic steps to serve as a basis for ensuring safe patient transfer. These include consistent discussion and documentation of end-of-life care preferences, educating the family about reasons for transfer, prompt and consistent medication reconciliation, and primary consideration of the patient's individual preferences.

While the white paper focuses specifically on transitions between acute care and skilled nursing care, and vice versa, the AMDA calls for improved transitions across all care settings. For more information, or to obtain a copy of the paper, visit