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CHAP Bringing ‘Age-Friendly Health Systems’ Initiative Into The Home

CHAP Bringing ‘Age-Friendly Health Systems’ Initiative Into The Home

Community Health Accreditation Partner (CHAP) has received a $2.3 million grant from The John A. Hartford Foundation (JAHF) to bring the Age-Friendly Health Systems movement to home-based care.

Broadly, the age-friendly framework is a patient-centered care focus. It concentrates on the “4Ms” – what matters, medication, mentation and mobility. The first “M” pertains to what matters to the patient in their lives, with the latter three being more self explanatory. Both home health and hospice agencies are invited to participate in the accreditation.

CHAP’s leaders believes that this is the start of a new standard of care for home-based care agencies, and also think age-friendly accreditation could be a differentiator for agencies that get receive the distinction after this initial grant.

“They’re trying to get the 4Ms to be intentional considerations for every patient that is cared for in the health system,” Dan McPhilemy, the SVP of marketing and business development at CHAP, told Home Health Care News. “And we wanted to bring that to the home. [The John A. Hartford Foundation] agreed, and gave us a grant to create that in-home recognition for providers. We’ve started writing standards to create a way for people to get recognized for their participation, and also to demonstrate their ability to do participate.”

Arlington, Virginia-based CHAP is an independent and nonprofit organization that accredits home- and community-based care providers. It is approved by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), and it surveys home health, home care, hospice and home medical equipment providers.

The age-friendly initiative is a creation of The John A. Hartford Foundation and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, ​in partnership with the American Hospital Association (AHA) and the Catholic Health Association of the United States. The home-based care initiative specifically will be a subdivision under the Age-Friendly Health Systems program.

“It’s a simple core philosophy of what they’re trying to achieve,” McPhilemy said. “They’re trying to get those ‘4Ms’ to be intentional considerations for every patient that is cared for in the health system.”

More than 2,800 health care organizations in the U.S. are now part of the Age-Friendly Health Systems movement, according to the AHA. The program has reportedly boosted staff satisfaction, retention and patient satisfaction scores.

Khai Nguyen – CHAP’s National Medical Director – had come from a health system that worked underneath age-friendly and “4Ms” framework, which was the organization’s introduction to it.

The patient satisfaction scores are of note in particular, as the home health industry gets ready to take on the Home Health Value-Based Purchasing (HHVBP) Model. Patient-reported scores are a part of how home health agencies will be scored against each other under the model.

“So imagine I’m in the value-based purchasing world now and am an agency trying to provide that value,” CHAP SVP Teresa Harbour told HHCN. “If I am focusing on what matters to that patient, that is going to add a lot of value – increased customer satisfaction, increased five star ratings. When I’m incorporating what matters into the plan of care, that’s where I’m going to have improved outcomes. That’s where this goes hand in hand with value-based purchasing.”

Among the partners that CHAP already has in this initiative are Enhabit Inc. (NYSE: EHAB), Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM), Aveanna Healthcare Holdings Inc. (Nasdaq: AVAH), LHC Group Inc. (Nasdaq: LHCG), Intrepid USA, Bayada, AccentCare, Compassus, Right at Home, Home Care Association of America (HCAOA), the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC), the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) and Axxess.

“Enhabit, for instance, they are just so ready,” Harbour said. “They’ve already hired two project leaders to start working with us to be able to roll this out across their home health and hospices. They’re already changing some of the wording that they are using around patient-centered goals.”

Right at Home’s involvement is also an indication of what’s to come. CHAP does not want this to be solely a process that home health agencies undertake, but instead, all home-based care providers.

“We’re going to build this and translate what they’re doing in the hospital to the home,” McPhilemy said. “So that home care can get a seat at the table of these hospital initiatives that always seem to end at discharge.”