Clinical, News, Quality of care, Skilled Nursing Facility

More Therapy Associated with Better Outcomes

A new study published January 1, 2016 in the journal Physical Therapy found that an additional hour of therapy per week was associated with a 3.1% increase in the likelihood of discharge to home. Because skilled nursing facilities (SNF) have increasingly been providing more therapy hours to beneficiaries of Medicare, the study sought to determine whether more therapy is helpful.

Researchers concluded that more therapy hours in SNFs appear to improve outcomes, except for patients with the greatest need (the study found that the effect of the addition of more than the one hour of therapy decreased as the Resource Utilization Group (RUG) category increased, and added therapy didn’t benefit patients in the higher RUG.) This study was supported by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the National Institute on Aging.