United Hospital Fund Receives Grant from New York State Health Foundation to Study Ways to Improve Discharge Planning by Improving Patient and Family Communications

NEW YORK, NEW YORK October 20, 2017—United Hospital Fund was awarded a grant of $219,606 by the New York State Health Foundation to improve the ability of patients and their families to make the best possible decisions about post-acute care through better information and communication.

The one-year project, which begins November 1, will focus on 1) the difficulties patients and family caregivers experience and their communication and information preferences about care options, and 2) how staff in up to eight participating hospitals in the New York metropolitan area involve patients and families and share information with them in planning for discharge.

Post-acute care—the services that many patients receive when they leave hospital—is a critical and growing component of the health care system. More than 40 percent of Medicare beneficiaries were discharged into post-acute care in 2013. Treatment may include a stay in a nursing home or rehabilitation facility, outpatient therapy, or care provided at home. But before the discharge process begins, patients and their families must make complex decisions under time pressures and emotionally challenging circumstances.

This project seeks to improve the ability of patients and family caregivers to make the best possible decisions about post-acute care by examining their needs for information and support during the critical moments of the discharge process when they are contemplating various care options. The project will also examine the perspectives of hospital staff involved in discharge planning and staff at nursing homes that provide short- and long-term, post-acute care.

UHF plans to identify best practices, training needs, innovative tools and approaches, and policy levers that hold potential for improving post-acute care decision-making in New York.

About United Hospital Fund

United Hospital Fund works to build a more effective health care system for every New Yorker. An independent, nonprofit organization, we analyze public policy to inform decision-makers, find common ground among diverse stakeholders, and develop and support innovative programs that improve the quality, accessibility, affordability, and experience of patient care. For more on our initiatives and programs please visit our website at www.uhfnyc.org and follow us on Twitter.

About New York State Health Foundation

The New York State Health Foundation (NYSHealth) is a private, statewide foundation dedicated to improving the health of all New Yorkers, especially the most vulnerable. Today, NYSHealth concentrates its work in two strategic priority areas: building healthy communities and empowering health care consumers. The Foundation is committed to making grants, informing health policy and practice, spreading effective programs to improve the health care system and the health of New Yorkers, serving as a convener of health leaders across the State, and providing technical assistance to its grantees and partners.

Oct. 20, 2017
Focus Area
Clinical-Community PartnershipsQuality and Efficiency
Quality Institute