Trends in Hospital Discharge Among COVID-19

With the Coronavirus reports hitting an all-time high across the country, we at South Coast Post Acute want to make sure your hospital discharge goes successfully. Despite the news media reports of skilled post-acute facilities turning away patients over COVID-19 fears, South Coast Post Acute is doing our part to ensure our at-risk patients get the care they need.

The Crucial Defense

According to Forbes, states are beginning to transfer patients infected with the Coronavirus to help over-burdened hospitals. Many states like Massachusetts and New York are organizing a system where only facilities that have been designated to care for these patients will receive them. However, this brings up the safety issue of  protecting vulnerable patients at nursing facilities who do not have the coronavirus.

The goal is to allow hospitals to reserve beds for the most severely ill patients. However, post acute care facilities are concerned at the prospect of taking patients who may have the infections. 

According to Christopher Laxton, executive Director of AMDA – the Society for Post Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine, said “We’re looking at case fatality rates of 30, 40, 50% in nursing homes when coronavirus gets introduced.”

However, the first priority is to identify facilities that have the proper equipment and skilled staff to handle these patients. These facilities need to make sure they have procedures in place to quarantine patients that have been identified as contracting the virus so it won’t spread to the rest of the facility.

With this idea gaining steam, there is a question whether this may spread to other states, including California. If you are planning to be discharged to a skilled-nursing or post acute care community it’s best to call first. Every facility wants to provide the best care for their patients and not put them in any harm even prior to discharge. 

The Next Step – Ensure a Safe and Healthy Hospital Discharge

As the fear of the Coronavirus is spreading globally, patients who have been discharged from hospitals need to find a post acute care facility to recover. At this time, South Coast Post Acute has not been appointed to receive COVID-19 patients from hospitals in the area. If things do change we will be sure to update each of our staff, patients, and patients’ families.

Tips For a Safe and Healthy Hospital Discharge to Post Acute Care

We know our area hospitals will be practicing “safe-discharge” procedures with patients leaving their facilities. Therefore, no patients sickened by the virus would be admitted to South Coast Post Acute.

If you happen to be a patient that is being discharged to post acute care during this time, here are some planning tools to improve your outcome. 

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) has a planning toolkit to help better engage patients and their caregivers of the health and success of transition in care.

An IDEAL discharge planning solution includes:

  • Include patients and families to partner in the discharge planning process.
  • Discuss key areas to prevent problems at home, reviewing medications needed, explain test results and making follow-up appointments.
  • Educate the patient and family in plain language about the patient’s condition, the discharge process, and next steps.
  • Assess the explanation of what the doctors and nurses have told the patient and provide next steps for successful transition.
  • Listen to the goals of each patient and honor their wishes. Be understanding of their preferences and concerns.

As a guide for successful discharge to a post-acute care facility, remember these following items to stay safe and calm during this time. 

  1. Have support in place – Stay safe and healthy by having a supportive caregiver help you with the transition. 
  2. Stay healthy – Remain diligent on hand washing and keeping your clothing clean.
  3. Understand ways to improve your health – Keep calm during the transition and consult your physicians and caregivers on ways to improve your health throughout the process.
  4. Ask for written discharge instructions – this will help you and your caregiver understand your needs to get you back to optimal health.

Safety For Our Patients

South Coast Post Acute currently has no patients or staff infected with the Coronavirus. To keep it this way, we have instituted a no visiting policy until further notice.

In addition, we have implemented strict preventive measures to ensure a safe and healthy facility for our residents.

What South Coast Post Acute is Doing to Prevent the Spread of Viruses

  • Regular disinfecting of patient rooms and common areas
  • A continued hand washing policy is implemented for all staff and physicians after treating patients
  • Regular hand washing procedures for patients
  • Access to alcohol-based sanitizer
  • Use of disposable latex gloves used during all patient interactions
  • Screening the health of staff before entering the facility

South Coast Post Acute Can Help

Prevention and care can go a long way in keeping patients protected. At South Coast Post Acute, we have a strong commitment to our work and a dedicated spirit of caring within our post-acute care community. Because of this, we’re the recovery center of choice for patients, providers, and caregivers. In a time where health concerns are at an all-time high, our knowledge of medicine and tools can make a difference. 

Exceptional, compassionate care; every time, every touch. Contact us today!