White Coat Notes: MA doctors value home health services, note barriers

White Coat Notes is a blog on Boston.com that touts news from the Boston area medical community, covering a range of health-related topics.  In a July 6 entry, White Coat Notes covered the recently released survey conducted by the Massachusetts Medical Society in collaboration with the Home Care Alliance of Massachusetts physicians’ attitudes and utilization of home health services.

Click here to see the blog/article on the survey results.

Within the survey, there were multiple advantages in terms of improving care and reducing costs without compromising outcomes, but many barriers to accessing home health services were identified. Some of the more noteworthy results of the survey are below:

Positives:
•    97% say the services help them better manage their patients’ care at home
•    89% believe they reduce inpatient hospital admissions without compromising quality of care or health care outcomes
•    78% reported better patient compliance with care plans
•    78% believe telemonitoring services and remote monitoring of vital signs can improve quality of care; 67% believe these services can reduce patient cost
•    78% reported that past experience with a home care agency increased their confidence in referring patients
•    73% say services can reduce caregiver stress
•    65% reported better coordination of care plans
•    63% say they can lead to reductions in emergency department visits
•    50% reported faster recovery in post-acute care
•    41% believe they can provide cost savings

Negatives:
•    54% believed administrative burdens in the form of paperwork are the main barrier their use of home care services
•    53% reported they had to prolong a patient’s stay due to lack of access to services
•    40% noted that reimbursement issues were a barrier to using the services, yet 71% say they do not apply for reimbursement and 64% say they are unaware reimbursement is available.

Check out the full results of the physician survey here.

Return to www.thinkhomecare.org.

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