News, Skilled Nursing Facility

CMS reports dramatic reduction in avoidable hospitalizations among LTC residents

In the past, hospitalizations for potentially preventable conditions were found to be disproportionately high among those dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid.

Yesterday, on January 17, 2017, CMS reported that the overall rate of hospitalizations among these beneficiaries has seen a decline of 13 percent in recent years. In long-term care facilities, the agency has seen even larger decreases in avoidable hospitalizations.

The agency reported that in 2010, the rate of potentially avoidable hospitalizations for dually-eligible beneficiaries in long term care facilities was 227 per 1,000 beneficiaries; by 2015 the rate had decreased to 157 per 1,000. This decrease in potentially avoidable hospitalizations happened nationwide, with improvement in all 50 states. The reduced rate of potentially avoidable hospitalizations means that dually-eligible long-term care facility residents avoided 133,000 hospitalizations over the past five years. 

CMS recognizes the impact of those who directly serve older adults and people with disabilities on this success.

Common preventable or manageable conditions that are being better treated in long-term care facilities to avoid hospitalizations include:

  • Bacterial pneumonia
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Dehydration
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Skin ulcers
  • Asthma