Editor’s Picks: Philips’ Latest Aging-in-Place Tech

This week, Home Health Care News readers had their interest piqued by Philips’ latest foray into aging-in-place technology, a health system’s successful approach to improving its palliative care services, and federal lawmakers’ collective stand against home health prior authorization. Readers also were curious to learn the best ways to reduce turnover amongst home health aides.

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Philips, Right at Home Partner for ‘Always-On’ Home Care—Philips (NYSE: PHG) has introduced a platform of connected sensors designed to monitor seniors in their homes in an effort to provide “always-on” home care and peace of mind for caregivers. Through a partnership with in-home care franchise network Right at Home, Philips plans to bring its CareSensus remote monitoring system directly to 25 of the Omaha, Nebraska-based company’s agencies to start.

Health System Data Proves Palliative Care Pays Off—Some health systems, like UnityPoint Health (UPH)—an integrated health system that operates in Iowa, Illinois and Wisconsin—are working on improving access and increasing awareness of palliative care services within home settings, and harnessing data to prove the value. UPH, for instance, been improving its palliative care at home and hospice services across the health system for more than a decade.

Lawmakers Take Stand Against Home Health Prior Authorization—A bipartisan group of 116 lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives penned a letter to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Acting Administrator Andrew Slavitt and Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell requesting the withdrawal of the proposed demonstration for prior authorization of Medicare home health services. Delaying patient care while waiting for CMS to approve home health services would jeopardize patient health and result in patients remaining in the hospital longer than necessary, the lawmakers said in the letter.

Top Ways to Reduce Home Health Aide Turnover—Preventing employee turnover in the home health and hospice industries may come down to providing sufficient work to caregivers who want it and preventing on-the-job injuries, according to a new study published in The Gerontologist.

Weekend Reads

16 Things I Would Want If I Got Dementia—Rachael Wonderlin, the director of memory care at Senior Services of America in Pittsburgh, lays out 16 rules she would like to live by if she eventually got dementia, including “If I get dementia, make sure that there are plenty of snacks for me in the house. Even now, if I don’t eat I get angry, and if I have dementia, I may have trouble explaining what I need.”

83% of U.S. Seniors Want to Keep Their Own Homes in Retirement—The American College’s Home Equity and Retirement Income Planning Survey revealed 83% of Americans in or nearing retirement “do not want to relocate in retirement,” The Street reported. Could this bode well for the home health and home care industries?

Written by Mary Kate Nelson