The Choose Home Concept and the Role of Virtual Care

What is Choose Home?

Choose Home is a SNF-at-home model that leverages both home health and home care services for patients who can heal at home with medical and non-medical support.  Home Health Care News reports that the model is gaining ground in Congress and among special interest groups as it is considered a time-boxed, cost-effective benefit that includes Medicare-certified skilled home health and personal care services.  Choose Home has positive implications for reimbursement as it would “create a new payment pathway around a 30-day episode of care” and could also result in new Medicare access for non-medical home care agencies.

In the January 2021 Synzi Spotlight, NAHC President Bill Dombi highlighted the importance of the Choose Home concept.  “In home health, the priorities are Choose Home, a SNF alternative, and  getting some leverage around Medicare Advantage,” said Dombi.  “We now have data available to us to help convince Medicare Advantage they should invest in home care rather than to consider it a cost. Rural ad-on needs to be reinstated, Senator Susan Collins will be there with us on that. We need direct reimbursement for telehealth services, allowing the use of it is great but you got to help pay for it too.”

What is the Role of Virtual Care?

In balancing patients’ medical and non-medical care, telehealth and remote patient monitoring technologies will play key roles in the Choose Home model.  Synzi’s telehealth and virtual care platform helps post-acute care organizations deploy the SNF-at-home model with a high-touch / high-tech approach.

With Synzi, home care aides can communicate with the patient, family caregivers, and medical staff using HIPAA-compliant messaging and video:

  • Ongoing support: Enables aides to conveniently and frequently support clients with some of their activities of daily living or just offer friendly companionship.
  • Immediate access: Helps aides access a clinician if the patient falls or the aide observes a change in condition
  • Additional care: Enables clients and aides to engage additional remote resources (e.g., family caregivers, home health staff, referring physician) on-demand during an at-home visit

With Synzi, home health clinicians can engage their patients more frequently and reduce hospitalizations.  Virtual visits can complement in-person visits.  Providers and patients can connect via HIPAA-compliant video for scheduled and on-demand check-in’s.  ePHI can be safely and securely communicated via secure messaging to ensure that wound photos and other patient info are shared in an encrypted, HIPAA-compliant environment.  Condition-specific messaging can be sent to patients to strengthen their understanding of their condition and their role in adherence and overall self-care. Patients can easily share their vital signs using Bluetooth-enabled devices and their smartphones or tablets so home health clinicians can better monitor and manage their patients on key measures. And, patients can be asked to complete digital assessments so agencies can track patient progress between scheduled interactions.

Synzi helps skilled and nonskilled professionals better support patients and practice at the very top of their licenses while remaining connected with each other, the patient, the family caregiver – and the referring physician.

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