SNFs progressing toward Quality Initiative goals, AHCA reports

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More than 6,000 skilled nursing facilities achieved notable gains in the first year of the American Health Care Association's Quality Initiative, the provider association announced yesterday.

The Quality Initiative launched with four goals in 2012: reducing inappropriate use of antipsychotics by 15%; reducing nursing staff turnover by 15%; reducing 30-day hospital readmissions by 15%; and increasing customer satisfaction by having 90% of residents and families willing to recommend the SNF to others.

The antipsychotic reduction goal was supposed to be achieved by the end of 2012 but was extended through 2013. The Quality Initiative called for the other three goals to be achieved by the end of 2015. About 3,700 facilities achieved one of the four goals during the program's first year, AHCA determined, based on Minimum Data Set analysis and information submitted by the participating SNFs. Antipsychotic reduction was the most commonly achieved goal, followed by reducing readmissions, increasing staff stability and increasing customer satisfaction.

Papillion Manor in Papillion, NE, was one of 68 centers to meet all four goals within the first year. The facility's success comes from having strong processes in place and acting promptly, Administrator Roz Burke told McKnight's.

Papillion Manor did not implement any new processes specifically to meet Quality Initiative goals, but it did make some of the existing processes more stringent, Burke noted. For example, staff began reviewing antipsychotic usage as soon as there was a new order, rather than on a monthly basis.

Burke and her team have employed some principles from the Quality Assurance and Performance Improvement initiative to hit the rehospitalization goal. They confer with their medical director, who reviews charts to see what could have been done differently each time a resident is readmitted to the hospital.

“It's about treating people right at all levels, so everyone gets dignity in life, and that's what we strive for,” Burke noted.