Ontario hospital system to experiment with ‘bundled care’

April 27, 2012

The St. Joseph's Health System is about to begin an experiment with "bundled care," a model of treatment that will coordinate hospitalization, long-term care and home care, according to The Spec.

Each patient's care coordination will be overseen by one point person at the hospital, rather than being delegated among different providers within the system. Plans are formulated before a patient is admitted to the hospital and include considerations for discharge and home care.

Ontario is providing the funds necessary to test and evaluate this model for individuals who have surgery on their lungs, hips or knees, as well as patients who have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Thus far, results have shown that patient stays in the hospital are one day shorter on average, the emergency room is visited less frequently and home care performs 50 percent more efficiently.

"We're always talking about where are patients most frustrated and it's almost always at the points at which we hand them over between hospitals and family doctors and long-term care and home care," St Joseph's CEO Kevin Smith told the news source. "It's about the continuum and that's where we want to go as an organization. We've all talked about this for an awfully long time and now we're doing it."

Public Health Agency Canada estimates that nearly 4,000 people have died so far in the nation in 2012 due to chronic respiratory disease.

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