I recently ventured to Florida to participate in the inaugural meeting of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization’s (NHPCO’s) 2012 Quality and Standards Committee. It was a vibrant gathering with colleagues from across the country. I believe we shared the collective realization that big or small we were all now immersed in the new hospice…new regulatory requirements, new consumer expectations and a new push to diversify and expand but not allow our programs to drift from the mission that we embraced “back in the day’.
We acknowledged that it is no longer sufficient to provide ‘tender loving care’, or as I like t0 say “skilled care with your heart in the right place”. Hospice programs must now demonstrate decisions based on data, the ability to adapt to a changing regulatory landscape and the ability to provide and document quality care in the face of reimbursement cuts.
I am,however, reassured that as an industry we are true to our core values. NHPCO’s efforts to proactively respond to the changes are evident through the work of the Quality and Standards committee . There are subcommittees charged with identifying outcome measures for the work that we do, another to identify what comprises a true quality program, another to document and disseminate varying models of care and ,or course, the committment to Honor our Veterans (WHV). Gilchrist Hospice Care has signed on to the WHV program and, as in everything we do, we are prepared to do it in the finest fashion.
I am confident that here at home base GHC is prepared and preparing for the changes and challenges to come. Each and every day leadership is committed to understanding the new rules we need to live by and of comparable importance committed to doing ‘what is right to do for each and every patient”.