Shot in the Arm for Transfusion Procedures
How can a facility send anemic patients out for blood transfusions without having them admitted to the hospital? This was the challenge Hebrew Home at Riverdale in Bronx, NY, faced, and medical director Zachary Palace, MD, CMD, discovered that some simple changes could have a big impact. In a session at the Society’s 2015 Annual Conference, Dr. Palace described his solution, which was the focus of his Foundation Quality Improvement award-winning project, “Development of an Outpatient Transfusion Program to Reduce Avoidable Hospitalizations.” The problem was “distressing,” Dr. Palace said. His facility would send anemic residents requiring transfusions to the emergency department, and the physicians there would admit them to the hospital based on the diagnosis of anemia and need for a transfusion. “Our residents would come back to us with decubiti and all sorts of infections that they didn’t have when we sent them out.” Needless Hospital Stay These residents had a 5.3-day mean length of stay in the hospital with a mean cost to Medicare of $10,339. “It was appalling. There had to be a way to get them transfusions without all the complications and exposure to risks,” Dr. Palace said. Submissions for the Foundation Quality Improvement Awards are now being accepted. Click here for more information.