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November 1, 2011

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  • Collaboration — and coordination of care — is the future of health care

    The current focus in federal health policy on coordinating patients' health care throughout the entire continuum of care has resulted in promotion of Accountable Care Organizations (ACO), Medical Homes, and Integrated Delivery Networks.
  • Expand the reach of your marketing with public relations

    This is the first of a two-part series that looks at effective media relations. This month, we look at proven strategies that result in media coverage of hospice events, services, and announcements. Next month, tips and strategies for handling media relations during a crisis are described.
  • How to make the perfect pitch

    Although there are many different ways to present information to reporters and editors to obtain media coverage, the key to each of them is to know your audience, according to experts interviewed by Hospice Management Advisor.
  • Hospice improves care for dementia patients and their families

    Hospice services substantially improved the provision of care and support for nursing home patients dying of dementia and their families, according to an analysis of survey responses from hundreds of bereaved family members. The research comes as hospice funding has received particular scrutiny in the debate over Medicare spending.
  • Advance directives for palliative care use lower Medicare EOL spending

    Advance directives do have an impact on health care at the end of life, especially in regions of the country with high spending on end-of-life care, according to a University of Michigan study.
  • Data show palliative care saves Medicaid money, improves care

    Medicaid patients facing serious or life-threatening illnesses incurred $6,900 less in hospital costs if they received palliative care, compared with a similar group of patients who received usual care, according to a new study.
  • Chatting about faith boosts patient approval

    Hospitalized patients who had conversations about religion and spirituality with the health care team were the most satisfied with their overall care. However, 20% of patients who would have valued these discussions say their desires went unmet, according to a new study by Joshua Williams from the University of Chicago and his colleagues.1 Their work appears on-line in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.
  • Survival rates unaffected by end-of-life discussions

    Discussing and documenting patients' preferences for care at the end of life does not cause them any harm, contrary to recent claims. A new study published in the Journal of Hospital Medicine found that patients who talk with their physicians about end-of-life care and have an advance directive in their medical record have similar survival rates as patients who do not have these discussions and documents.
  • Reach out to the community

    Successful partnerships in health care occur when both organizations have the same high standards of care and philosophy. It is also important to stay in touch with your community and understand what information they want and need to make good decisions about care, points out Flint Besecker, chief executive officer of the Center for Hospice and Palliative Care in Cheektowaga, NY.