NPHI Roundtable Celebrates National Heart Health Month: “In-Home Cardiac Care is All Heart”

WASHINGTONFeb. 1, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — In 2020, the National Partnership for Healthcare and Hospice Innovation (NPHI), the largest collaborative of not-for-profit hospices in the United States, launched the Advanced Cardiac Care (ACC) Program to support the home-based palliative care of patients with serious cardiovascular disease. Since then, top performing NPHI programs have seen nearly 30% increases in cardiac patient admissions and improved clinical outcomes, even in the face of COVID-19 restrictions.

“The ACC has demonstrated that community-based hospice providers are uniquely suited to bridge treatment gaps in cardiac care: Patients enrolled in our programs lived much longer, saw fewer hospitalizations, emergency visits, and were more likely to die at home – all at a lower average cost of care,” said Cameron Muir, MD, Chief Innovation Officer, NPHI. “Serious cardiac illness can be daunting for patients, families, and caregivers, which is why our programs never turn anyone away, regardless of ability to pay.”

“We’re so proud of the work our members have done to support this population,” added Carole Fisher, President, NPHI. “But the success of this program made us ask ourselves: What are the ingredients for successful innovation in the palliative and hospice care space?”

To answer this question, on February 28th at 12pm EST, NPHI will be hosting a moderated discussion featuring several NPHI members who participated in the ACC program. Panelists include:

The roundtable, titled Healthcare Innovation: In-Home Cardiac Care is All Heart, will look at the real-world impacts of innovative programs like the ACC, obstacles to innovation adoption, and a rapidly changing competitive landscape. Learn more and register here.

“Figuring out how to innovate well across hospice care is critical when you look at what we know about palliative care for those with cardiovascular disease,” said Steve Cone of Capital Caring. “We know that we can reliably prevent thousands of patients with heart failure from dying in hospital ICU’s – why aren’t more programs doing this?”

Palliative care is valuable for heart failure patients and – according to research published in the Journal of the American Heart Association – can lower risk of repeated hospitalization and minimize the need for invasive procedures such as mechanical ventilation or defibrillator implantation. This is key because the prevalence of heart failure is expected to grow, increasing the need for families to consider long-term care options.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has really highlighted the value of at-home care, including palliative care and home hospice care, for heart failure patients and aging populations,” said palliative care expert, Neeraj Mendiratta, MD, volunteer medical expert for the American Heart Association and assistant physician in chief with Kaiser Permanente. “There’s a false perception that palliative and at-home care is only provided at the very end of life. However, palliative care can be beneficial for patients in any stage of a serious illness”

As heart failure progresses, patients experience a high symptom burden that negatively impacts their ability to function, creates discomfort and increases risks of death. Palliative care not only helps relieve symptoms and improve quality of life (e.g., pain management and emotional support) but can also improve prognosis. Using data from the Veterans Affairs (VA) External Peer Review Program, researchers found that cardiac patients who received palliative care were:

  • less likely to be re-hospitalized (31% vs 40%)
  • less likely to require invasive procedures (2.5% vs 5.4%)
  • 25% less likely to be placed on mechanical ventilation

Initial national baseline data from NPHI members enrolled in the ACC was similarly compelling. Compared to those without hospice and palliative care, patients in said member programs were:

  • 23% less likely to be re-hospitalized
  • 13% less likely to visit the emergency department in the last 30 days of life
  • 33.7% more likely to die at home

Palliative care has already transformed the care experience for many families. For Charlie Peters and his wife Beth, palliative care allowed them to stay in their home of 60 years. Prior to receiving specialized care, their son had urged his parents to consider assisted living.

“We didn’t want to do that, particularly Charlie who loves and is comfortable and happy in his home,” said Beth. “I was so fearful (…) that something awful would happen to him, and I’d have to call an ambulance. Knowing they’re there, I sleep at night, and my son is sleeping at night too.”

Additional information on the Advanced Cardiac Care Program Patient and Caregiver Handbook can be found here.

Register for the roundtable here.

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Media Contact:
Allan Malievsky
Communications Director, NPHI

About the National Partnership for Healthcare and Hospice Innovation (NPHI): Serving over 120,000 patients daily and employing thousands of medical professionals, NPHI is driven by passion and integrity to help people live fully through the end–of–life. Our commitment is to ensure patients and their families experience advanced illness and end–of–life care consistent with their goals, values, and preferences. Our not–for–profit member programs across 32 states and the District of Columbia seek to accomplish this by facilitating innovative design of more effective and comprehensive models of care, advocating for comprehensive community–integrated care that is customized to meet each individual patient’s needs, and enabling collaboration between national thought leaders, decisionmakers, and health care stakeholders to strengthen hospice care. |