The QIN-QIOs Offer Home Health Agencies a Unique Opportunity
March 9, 2015 01:24 PM
On August 1, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Quality Improvement Organization (QIO) program began new quality improvement initiatives under its11th Statement of Work (SOW). The 11th SOW is being carried out by the recently formed Quality Innovation Network - Quality Improvement Organizations (QIN-QIOs). There are 14 QIN-QIOs that are conducting work throughout the nation with each QIN-QIO covering 2- 6 states. For more information on the QIN-QIO Program, please click here.
The 11th SoW includes opportunities for home health agencies to play a key role in achieving the nation’s goal to significantly reduce the number of heart attacks and strokes.
Under one of the program aims: Healthy People, Healthy Communities: Improving the Health Status of Communities, the QIN-QIOs have been tasked with improving cardiac health and reducing cardiac healthcare disparities (Task B.1). Task B.1 specifically requires the QIN-QIOs to actively recruit home health agencies to participate in this quality initiative.
HHAs who manage patients with the greatest cardiovascular health needs and who are most challenged to succeed in implementing evidence-based practices to improve cardiovascular; such as those supported in Million Hearts® initiative, will be the focus of recruitment efforts.
The QIN-QIOs will provide technical assistance to HHAs as follows:
Utilize the Best Practice Intervention Packages (BPIPs) developed through the HHQI National Campaign to prevent heart attacks and strokes for beneficiaries receiving services from home health agencies.
Work with the HHA to sign up for the Cardiovascular Data Registry developed through the HHQI National Campaign in order to track progress related to the ABCS.
Include at least, but is not limited to, the following tasks:
Utilization of health literacy and educational tools for HHAs to provide beneficiary education including successful interventions and literature appropriate for all racial and ethnic beneficiaries served by the agency.
Ensuring that home health agencies are invited to and participate in the cardiac LAN activities, any forum and/or LISTSERV or other mechanism by which the home health agencies may collaborate with and share success stories, strategies, successful interventions, and activities with others to improve the ABCS for home health patients.
Provide more intensive one-on-one technical assistance for HHAs on processes and procedures that are beneficial, including training HHAs on the use of Home Health Quality Improvement (HHQI) National Campaign successful interventions, tools, health information technology and interoperable key clinical information and other resources focused on the ABCS.
Provide technical assistance to HHAs experiencing staffing shortages and those with limited technological infrastructure unable to download educational resources and literature.
In addition to improving the cardiac health of patients, the work of this quality initiative is aligned with the goals of the proposed Conditions of Participation. Agencies can build a foundation for developing an ongoing, data-driven, agency-wide quality improvement program, while enhancing the process for care planning, delivery, and coordination of services.
Click here to view a fact sheet on Task B.1 and home health.
Since the QIN-QIOs have been actively recruiting home heath agencies for participation in Task B1, some agencies may have already or will soon be contacted by their QIN-QIO. The National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) strongly encourages agencies to respond to this opportunity to improve cardiac health and reducing healthcare disparities for the patients you serve.
Agencies do not need to wait to be contacted by their QIN-QIO. Any agency interested in participating should contact the QIN- QIO for their state and ask for the QIN-QIO 11th SoW Task B.1 lead.
Again, NAHC urges the home health community to take advantage of this unique opportunity.