Hospitals discharging to skilled nursing! Ugh

Hospitals seem to be in robot mode lately. The case managers (CM) and social workers (SW) automatically want to discharge your loved one to a skilled nursing facility (SNF) and that is NOT always the best or most beneficial for them.

The CM&SW and physicians aren’t usually familiar with the capabilities of individual skilled nursing facilities and honestly, just want the patient off their floor it seems. If the patient has Alzheimer’s or Dementia or even Delirium from a prolonged stay or anesthesia moving them more than once only confuses them and activates their symptoms. It’s common to even worsen any behaviors or sundowning them may have by moving from home to a hospital to a SNF then to an assisted living or even back home. That’s a LOT for anyone, let alone someone who has a cognitive impairment.

Please know that you do NOT have to take that route just because the hospital wants to discharge to a skilled nursing facility. Their are people out there that actually have the patients best interest at heart, like myself, who can help you navigate the system and do what’s best for the patient AND family.

The hospital has an incentive to send your family to a SNF. They get a large reimbursement from Medicare thru a bundle payment plan on most patients, therefore penalizing the hospital for NOT discharging to a SNF. The patient has rights and I urge you to use them.

Often times managed care plans only give a limited number of days which forces the patient / family to Quickly find an alternative place to go or even creating a large bill that continues to increase because Medicare or the managed plans quit covering the stay.

Also, if the patient needs therapy, this can often times be provided AT an independent or assisted living facility which creates 1-2 less moves for the patient. Even if the patient needs a home health nurse to make visits for IV antibiotics or wound care this can also be provided at a facility.

There are geriatric care managers that you can hire to help you and answer questions but they are costly. So who do you trust? Who do you call? Well, as your neighbor you can call me. I do not charge for the services we provide and we will always do what’s right for the patient.

Use your tools that you have available. Google, Trusted and long time personal physician, well rated services, reputable companies. Search and never settle.

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