You may feel anxious making the transition from private healthcare to Medicare.
However, the benefits far outweigh any possible challenges you may encounter
while moving into this new stage of health management.
Medicare is a customizable healthcare plan that is simplified to ensure
the best care for patients 65 and older. The goal is more managed and
preventive care. When you enroll in the Medicare system, you receive a
checklist to help you keep track of all the appointments you need in order
to maintain and improve your health. Medicare also offers in-home healthcare
services after a long stay in the hospital. This can include physical
or occupational therapy services along with much more for the duration
of your recovery.
Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) are groups of doctors, hospitals
and other healthcare providers that come together to create a more efficient
flow of services and practices, providing coordinated high-quality care
to their Medicare patients. ACOs involve a team approach to problem-solving
by bringing in local practices, community health workers, RNs and social
workers to address patient needs.
“The Trinity Health System has 27 ACOs and counting,” says
Debra Campbell, Director of Provider Relations for the Saint Francis Healthcare
ACO. “Three years ago Trinity decided it was time for us to start
an ACO. Since then the Saint Francis ACO, and now the Delaware Care Collaboration
ACO with which Saint Francis is affiliated, have been based on quality
care, lower costs and a better patient experience.”
Debra says she continually reminds her Provider Relations team that the
goal is to move away from reactive care and towards preventive care. The
team does this by helping participating practices such as Saint Francis
Healthcare transform their processes to be more proactive. On the other
side of this equation, a team of Saint Francis Healthcare nurses help
doctors determine which patients are high-risk and what is the best way
to treat them.
Saint Francis’ ACO, with the help of the Delaware Care Collaboration,
also gets creative with ways to keep patients on the right track. For
example, if a patient is missing appointments, the ACO social worker or
community health worker will visit them to assess their situation and
determine why they’re unable to keep appointments. Whether they
need help with transportation, bills or even obtaining food, the ACO works
with them to remedy the problem and ensure they’re getting the care
ACOs were created to improve healthcare across the board. Saint Francis
Healthcare is leading the charge by working towards collaborative and
comprehensive healthcare for all, continuing its mission of being the
preferred healthcare provider of Delaware.