Newsroom Article

Parkview Regional Medical Center and Ashton Creek launch the nation’s first transitional care unit and remote monitoring technology aimed at reducing hospital readmissions

New technology and collaborative care model together have reduced hospital readmissions five percent in five months with a 98 percent patient satisfaction rate

FORT WAYNE, IND. (January 25, 2017)Parkview Regional Medical Center and Ashton Creek Health and Rehabilitation Center, 4111 Park Place Drive, Fort Wayne, have partnered to reduce hospital readmission rates using a transitional care unit (TCU) paired with remote monitoring technology, a first-of-its-kind combination in the United States. A comfortable, home-like environment, the TCU is a 9-bed wing designed for 10 – 14 day transitions from the hospital to home, utilizing continuous, wireless tele-monitoring equipment that has resulted in a 98 percent patient satisfaction rate and a five percent reduction in hospital readmissions in the first five months of operation.

The remote monitoring technology, designed by Philips, allows a patient’s heart rate, respiration and oxygen levels to be monitored remotely by the clinical teams at Parkview Regional Medical Center and at the same time by the teams at Ashton Creek. When an unfavorable change in a patient’s vital signs is noted, Parkview notifies the Ashton Creek team by phone to jointly address the patient’s care. In addition to continuous monitoring, patients have freedom of movement throughout the day because the devices are worn similar to a watch, armband or heart rate monitor.

Dave Johnson, MD, medical director of Parkview’s senior care program, provides care alongside a dedicated team of Ashton Creek physicians, nurses and nurse practitioners. “The goal of this model is to give patients the right care at the right time in the right setting to achieve the best possible outcome and help ensure they aren’t readmitted to the hospital,” said Johnson. “This unit is designed for those who are not sick enough to warrant a hospital stay but not well enough yet to return to their previous living arrangement. We can now provide the comprehensive, transitional care that is specific to each person’s needs and closely monitor their changing health condition. All in a comfortable setting.”

According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, a hospital readmission is defined as an admission to any acute care hospital within 30 days of discharge from an acute care hospital. The transitional care model was assembled based on a long history of medical evidence that shows people with multiple and complex illnesses, such as congestive heart failure or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, are very likely to be readmitted after an acute care stay, especially the frail and elderly. Most readmissions happen within three to seven days of a patient being discharged from the hospital.

“The transitional care model has resulted in a significant drop in hospital readmissions since we launched the unit in August,” said Aaron Grindstaff, HFA, administrator, Ashton Creek Health and Rehabilitation Center. “The ability to offer a continued care plan from Parkview to Ashton Creek and the co-management of a patient between our teams has certainly led to better outcomes.”

Ashton Creek is located just east of Parkview Regional Medical Center off Diebold Rd., offering convenient access to Parkview outpatient physicians and services. In addition to 24/7 skilled nursing and tele-monitoring, medical services at Ashton Creek include IV and oxygen therapy; wound care; nutrition services with an on-site, registered dietician; and diabetic testing.

“We’ve seen several cases already where patients could have easily been re-hospitalized but the teams at Parkview and Ashton Creek have been able to keep them both out of the hospital and in a home-like environment until they’re healthy enough to transition home or to another unit within Ashton Creek,” Grindstaff added. “Our hope is that moving forward, more people will consider the transitional care unit as a stepping stone from the hospital to home, both for themselves or their loved ones.”       ​ 


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