Working Together to Transform End-of-Life Care
Transitions LifeCare’s partnership with the CMS Innovation Center in the Medicare Care Choices Model (MCCM) provided a unique opportunity for Medicare beneficiaries to receive support for serious end-stage illness without forgoing disease directed treatments. Typically, those under hospice care have ceased curative treatments, but this model exemplifies a health care delivery model that has helped to increase access to supportive care services, improve quality of life and patient/family satisfaction, and decrease health care costs. In fact, MCCM led to a nationwide 25% decrease in total Medicare spending, amounting to $21.5 million in net savings or $5,962 per decedent as well as increased length of stay and higher utilization of hospice at end of life. As the only hospice provider in this region to participate in this model, Transitions LifeCare applied to participate, knowing this model would transform health care at end of life.
“We were so dedicated to this model – which we branded Transitions CareChoices – because we knew we could provide more complete care to those with heart failure, cancer, COPD, and HIV/AIDS who may not have reached out to us for service otherwise,” notes Chief Medical Officer Dr. Laura Patel. “Care was provided in the patients’ homes, there were no additional co-pays or deductibles, and a nurse was available 24/7 to answer questions. We have been privileged to support nearly 400 patients and their families since we introduced this model in 2015.”
Originally, the MCCM was to last five years for Transitions LifeCare; however, we were able to extend an additional year due to COVID-19. “We are committed to participating in innovative programs, such as MCCM, that help advance health equity and improve the lives of those in our community,” Patel said. “We are looking ahead to continued, innovative partnerships that ensure everyone has access to the right care at the right time.”
For more information on Transitions LifeCare’s services and programs, visit transitionslifecare.org.