MASON CITY – In November of 2011, Mercy Medical Center-North Iowa created the Transitions of Care Group to advance the continuity of patient care and reduce the number of readmissions. One year later, the Transitions of Care Group continues to enhance the patient experience by improving communication across all aspects of healthcare to improve patient care and the quality of life after a hospital stay.
The Transitions of Care Group is a community-wide effort of nearly 100 professionals representing all aspects of health service including physicians, nurses, case management, ministry, skilled nursing, assisted living, nursing homes, home health, hospice and many others. The group serves healthcare facilities throughout Mercy-North Iowa’s 14-county service area.
“Our goal is to work together as healthcare entities within our communities to improve communication and quality of care for patients as they transition to the appropriate community healthcare services,” said Loretta Olsen, RN, MSN, ACM, Director of Case Management at Mercy-North Iowa and chairperson of the Transitions of Care Group.
To improve communication, the group developed a standard way to share information about patient care. This standard communication is used to maintain quality and safety by ensuring that whether a person is transferred to another care facility or requires home health care, all information is being communicated appropriately.
The group also works to reduce readmissions of patients by providing education to care facilities on best practices for treating heart failure patients once they have left the hospital. This education assists other health services in continuing the care program that was started for a patient during a hospital stay.
“We will continue to tackle healthcare challenges to improve the health of our communities,” said Olsen.
For more information about the Transitions of Care Group, contact Loretta Olsen at 641-428-7239.