"Hospitals Are Germy, Noisy Places. Some Acutely Ill Patients Are Getting Treated At Home Instead" — Michelle Andrews
Hospitals are germy and noisy places, putting acutely ill, frail patients at risk for infection, sleeplessness, and delirium, among other problems. Since Mount Sinai Health System in New York launched its hospital-at-home program, more than 700 patients have chosen it, and they have fared well on a number of measures. The average length of stay for acute care was 5.3 days in the hospital vs. 3.1 days for home-care patients. 30-day readmission rates for home-based patients were about half of those who have been hospitalized. Mount Sinai has partnered with Contessa Health, a company with expertise in home care, to negotiate contracts with insurers to pay for hospital-at-home services. Among other things, insurers are worried about the slippery slope of what it means to be hospitalized, said Linda DeCherrie, MD, associate professor of geriatrics and palliative medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and director of the Mount Sinai Visiting Doctors Program. Insurers “don’t want to be paying for an admission if this patient really wouldn’t have been hospitalized in the first place,” she said.
- Linda DeCherrie, MD, Associate Professor, Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Director, Mount Sinai Visiting Doctors Program, Program Director, Primary Care Internal Medicine Residency Program, The Mount Sinai Hospital