Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Antipsychotic Usage Down Nearly 30 Percent in Skilled Nursing Centers

Andrea Todd

AHCA announced that its skilled nursing center members have lowered antipsychotic usage by nearly 30 percent nationwide. According to data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), 16.7 percent of residents in member centers were receiving an antipsychotic medication in the third quarter of 2015 compared with 23.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2011 — a 29.2 percent decrease. Announced at its National Quality Summit in San Antonio, Texas, the milestone represents a faster rate of reduction and a lower rate of usage than non-member skilled nursing centers, which currently show a 27 percent decrease and 17.4 percent usage rate.

AHCA launched its metric-based Quality Initiative in 2012 and later joined CMS in supporting the National Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in Nursing Homes. In 2014, AHCA and CMS set goals to further decrease the use of antipsychotics in skilled nursing centers by a total of 30 percent by December 2016. Today, 54.6 percent of AHCA member centers have achieved the initial goal of a 25 percent reduction, while 48.9 percent have achieved the goal of a 30 percent reduction.

“We want to build upon this significant achievement,” said Dr. David Gifford, AHCA Senior Vice President of Quality and Regulatory Affairs and a board-certified geriatrician. “By taking a systems-based and person-centered care approach, I’m confident that we will continue to safely decrease the use of antipsychotics. Applying these approaches will also lead to success in other quality improvement areas.”
The Association expanded its Quality Initiative in May to include eight measurable targets that align with the CMS Quality Assurance/Performance Improvement (QAPI) program and federal mandates, such as Five-Star and the Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation (IMPACT) Act.

Current and former leaders of CMS delivered keynote addresses at the AHCA/NCAL Quality Summit, held the second week in February. Former CMS Administrator Dr. Donald Berwick addressed sector leaders, and Dr. Patrick Conway, CMS Chief Medical Officer and Deputy Administrator for Innovation & Quality, spoke about collaboration and the innovations used to deliver quality care.

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