Speaker at QIO Conference Challenges Congress to Abolish In-patient Care

COLUMBUS, Ohio--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Addressing the Kentucky Medicare Quality Improvement Organization today in Lexington, Dr. Tony Joseph, president of the Healthcare Accreditation Colloquium challenged Congress to abolish in-patient and out-patient reimbursement designations, calling them barriers to good care and wasteful.

“Health and Human Services is promoting community health. One way to promote community health is to eliminate barriers between hospitals and communities so that services flow more easily,” said Dr. Joseph. He noted that the artificial designation between in-patient care and out-patient care is a substantial barrier to integration of care across the continuum. “It is healthcare’s Berlin Wall,” he said.

The Colloquium’s focus is on heart failure, a chronic disease. “We know definitively that a patient’s heart simply does not know whether it is an in-patient and out-patient heart, said Joseph. “Congress needs to understand that to care for someone with a chronic disease, care needs be delivered in many different settings across the entire care continuum. Forcing providers to continue to determine in-patient versus out-patient and deal with piles of paperwork and penalties is a vestige of the 20th century.”

Elimination of the artificial in-patient/out-patient designation will force the Federal government to rethink the Federal healthcare budget. Instead of allocating funds for in-patient versus out-patient, funds can be allocated to cover the costs wherever the care takes place. This single non-partisan Act of Congress would break down the Berlin Wall of Healthcare by permitting providers to deliver the needed care in the most appropriate venue.

“With our aging population, heart failure has silently reached epidemic proportions,” said Joseph. “CMS is desperately trying to control 'in-patient' costs by refusing to pay for 30-day readmissions for heart failure. While many outpatient alternatives are available to avoid such readmissions, they also do not qualify for Medicare reimbursement. Deprived of 'outpatient' care, the patient’s condition worsens, requiring 'in-patient' admission which could have been avoided.” Even though the Colloquium’s primary focus is on heart failure, Joseph’s proposal will have a positive impact on all chronic diseases.

For further information visit ColloquiumHealth.com


The Healthcare Accreditation Colloquium
Tony Joseph, MD, Chief Executive Officer, 614-545-3800
[email protected]

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