Community Health Accreditation Partner (CHAP) has received a $2.3 million grant from the John A. Hartford Foundation (JAHF) to bring the age-friendly health systems movement into the home care setting.
Overall, the age-friendly framework is a patient-centric focus of care. It focuses on the “4Ms” – what matters, medication, mention and mobility. The first “M” refers to what is important to the patient in their life, with the last three being more self-explanatory. Both outpatient health services and hospice facilities are invited to participate in the accreditation.
CHAP leaders believe this is the beginning of a new standard of care for home care facilities and also think that age-appropriate accreditation could be a differentiator for facilities earning the award after this initial grant.
“They’re trying to get the 4 Ms to intentionally consider every patient who is being cared for in the healthcare system,” Dan McPhilemy, CHAP’s SVP of marketing and business development, told Home Health Care News. “And that’s what we wanted to bring home. [The John A. Hartford Foundation] agreed and granted us a grant to create this in-home recognition for vendors. We started writing standards to create a way for people to be recognized for their participation and also demonstrate their ability to participate.”
Based in Arlington, Virginia, CHAP is an independent, not-for-profit organization that accredits home and community-based care providers. It is approved by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and surveys home health, home care, hospice and home medical equipment providers.
The age-friendly initiative is a founding of the John A. Hartford Foundation and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement in partnership with the American Hospital Association (AHA) and the Catholic Health Association of the United States. In particular, the Home Care Initiative will be a sub-section of the Age-Friendly Health Systems programme.
“It’s a simple core philosophy of what they’re trying to accomplish,” McPhilemy said. “They’re trying to get these ‘4 Ms’ to make intentional considerations for every patient that’s being cared for in the healthcare system.”
According to the AHA, more than 2,800 healthcare organizations across the United States are now part of the age-friendly healthcare movement. The program has reportedly improved staff satisfaction, staff retention and patient satisfaction.
Khai Nguyen – CHAP’s national medical director – came from a healthcare system that operated under an age-friendly and “4Ms” framework, which was the organization’s introduction to it.
Patient satisfaction scores are particularly notable as the home health industry prepares to adopt the Home Health Value-Based Purchasing (HHVBP) model. Patient-reported outcomes are part of how community health agencies are evaluated against each other under the model.
“So imagine I’m in the value-based shopping world now, and I’m an agency trying to deliver that value,” CHAP SVP Teresa Harbor told HHCN. “If I focus on what’s important for this patient, it will bring great value – increased customer satisfaction, higher five-star ratings. If I include what is important in the care plan, I will get better results. That goes hand in hand with value-based purchasing.”
Partners CHAP already has in this initiative include Enhabit Inc. (NYSE: EHAB), Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM), Aveanna Healthcare Holdings Inc. (Nasdaq: AVAH), LHC Group Inc. (Nasdaq: LHCG ), Intrepid USA, Bayada, AccentCare, Comassus, Right at Home, Home Care Association of America (HCAOA), the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC), the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO), and Axxess.
“Enhabit, for example, they’re just so done,” Harbor said. “They have already hired two project leaders to work with us to roll this out to their home health care and hospices. They’re already changing some of the wording they use for patient-centric goals.”
Right at Home’s commitment is also an indication of what is to come. CHAP wants this to be a process not just for home health authorities, but for all home care providers.
“We’re going to build that and take what they’re doing in the hospital to the home,” McPhilemy said. “To give home care a seat at the table in these hospital initiatives that always seem to end in discharge.”