Reducing Potentially-Preventable Readmissions in CAHs

03/31/16  Minnesota

New policy brief available.

Preventable hospital readmissions are considered to be a marker of poor-quality care and may reflect problems with care coordination. Additionally, they place a significant financial burden on the health care system. Since October 1, 2012, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has penalized Prospective Payment System (PPS) hospitals with excess readmissions by reducing their Medicare payments under the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program (HRRP) authorized by the Affordable Care Act. Currently, CAHs are exempt from these penalties; however, readmission rates are an area of focus in the Medicare Beneficiary Quality Improvement Project (MBQIP). It is important for CAHs to examine their readmission rates and consider implementing strategies to reduce potentially-preventable readmissions.

This policy brief identifies successful evidence-based interventions that have been conducted to reduce readmissions in CAHs and other small rural hospitals.