Healthcare Provider Solutions

Are you monitoring the agency’s CAHPS results? There are numerous questions on the survey that the patients must complete, but only selected ones go into the outcome measure calculations. Home Health CAHPS results have been reported on the Home Health Compare website for quite some time, while the results for the CAHPS Hospice Survey just began being public reported on Hospice Compare 02/22/18.

One of the lowest scoring measures across the nation for hospice is Help with Pain & Symptoms. The following questions are included in this measure calculation:

  • How often did your family member receive the help he or she needed from the hospice team for feelings of anxiety or sadness?
  • How often did your family member get the help he or she needed for trouble with constipation?
  • How often did your family member get the help he or she needed for trouble breathing?
  • Did your family member get as much help with pain as he or she needed?

One of the lowest scoring measure across the nation for home health is Specific Care Issues. The following questions are included in this measure calculation:

  • When you first started getting home health care from this agency, did someone from the agency talk with you about how to set up your home so you can move around safely?
  • When you started getting home health care from this agency, did someone from the agency talk with you about all the prescription and over-the-counter medicines you were taking?
  • When you started getting home health care from this agency, did someone from the agency ask to see all the prescription and over-the-counter medicines you were taking?
  • In the last 2 months of care, did you and a home health provider from this agency talk about pain?
  • In the last 2 months of care, did home health providers from this agency talk with you about the purpose for taking your new or changed prescription medicines?
  • In the last 2 months of care, did home health providers from this agency talk with you about when to take these medicines?
  • In the last 2 months of care, did home health providers from this agency talk with you about the side effects of these medicines?

In both the home health and hospice lowest scoring measures the results are linked to direct care issues and in both cases pain management is a part of the measure. I challenge you to take a hard core look at documentation regarding how your clinicians are responding to patient and family member concerns regarding the questions above, especially pain. Do you respond to requests timely? Do you contact physicians promptly to initiate medication changes? Do you keep the family/patient informed about the status of your process in getting them the attention/care plan changes that they need?

Agencies should be training staff in the content of the questionnaire. DON’T FORGET to include all field staff members in this process. The agency’s home health aides are some of the most influential people in the patients’ lives. The Aides must be trained in what their patients are going to be asked.

Our HPS Alliance Membership, includes MONTHLY 90-Minute Webinars – the calendar has just been updated through the remainder of the year!