Category: Clinical concerns

CMS extends its staffing exemption for hospices through 2020

Source: Home Health Line Hospices battling the ongoing nursing shortage have two additional years to use contract nurses due to “extraordinary circumstances,” CMS has announced. “This designation enables those hospice agencies, which are unable to provide a sufficient number of nursing staff directly to meet the needs of its patients due to the national shortage, […]

FDA warns about feeding tube misconnections

In a letter to manufacturers, healthcare professionals and purchasers, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned of possible misconnections with enteral devices. The letter states that since 2011, 2 deaths, 24 serious injuries, and 32 device malfunctions related to these misconnections have occurred. If proper procedure is not followed, these tubes can mistakenly be […]

Educate aides about steps they can take to keep patients out of the hospital

Brought to you by Home Health Line. Aides can be an integral part of preventing hospitalizations, but they are often left out of an agency’s interdisciplinary team. A new, free online course from the Home Health Quality Improvement (HHQI) National Campaign will help educate aides about how to reduce avoidable hospitalizations. The one-hour course presents […]

Trial of Alzheimer’s drug provides hopeful results

A large clinical trial has, for the first time, shown that a drug can reduce both plaques in the brains of patients with Alzheimer’s disease and slow the progression of their dementia. According to The New York Times, results presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Chicago showed the drug, known currently as BAN2401, […]

CMS asks Medicare insurance providers to monitor prescriptions of Neudexta

CMS is warning insurance providers to watch prescriptions of Neudexta for off-label use. Neudexta is a prescription meant to treat symptoms of pseudobulbar affect (PBA), which can cause uncontrollable laughter or crying. As CNN reports, prescribing for off-label use is not illegal, but creating a false diagnosis in order to secure coverage of the prescription […]

Hundreds may have been exposed to TB at Delaware nursing home

State and health officials announced June 1 that more than 600 individuals may have been exposed to active tuberculosis at the ManorCare Health Services facility in Wilmington, Delaware during a nine-month period starting in January 2017. Officials were sending letters to current residents as well as former residents who stayed at the facility during the […]

Longer home health visits may reduce rehospitalization risk, study shows

Brought to you by Home Health Line. Agencies should consider scheduling visits earlier in the day for patients at higher risk for rehospitalization, a new study recommends. This is because visits that are longer than usual by just one minute reduce the risk of hospital readmission by 8%, and the duration of home health visits […]

Proposed hospice rule shows Alzheimer’s is top diagnosis

Brought to you by Home Health Line. Now that Alzheimer’s disease has risen to become by far the most commonly used hospice claims-reported diagnosis, hospices must be even more certain that their documentation for Alzheimer’s patients can withstand auditor scrutiny. G30.9 (Alzheimer’s disease, unspecified) was listed as a principal diagnosis 155,066 in the 2017 fiscal […]

Could education prevent the overuse of antibiotics for UTIs?

A study recently published in the Annals of Long-Term Care found that a checklist and certain other care and training interventions lowered the risk of UTIs and over-treatment of UTIs with antibiotics. Results of the study were presented at the American Geriatric Society 2018 Annual Scientific Meetings in Orlando, FL. The study is part of […]