Stephen Parodi, MD, on the future of hospital-at-home programs

Dr. Stephen Parodi
Stephen Parodi, MD

In a recent Home Health Care News “Disrupt” podcast, Stephen Parodi, MD, said the recent 2-year extension of the Acute Hospital Care at Home waiver gives hospital-at-home programs and regulators an opportunity to establish a stronger evidence base and regulatory framework. The waiver extension, part of the omnibus spending bill that became law at the end of December 2022, also allows for time to gather performance measures and benchmarks to guide the future of such programs. 

“I think it’s critically important that the bill passed, because it provides stability for [Kaiser Permanente’s] existing program and for programs across the country in terms of being able to pursue this new model of care,” said Dr. Parodi, executive vice president of The Permanente Federation and associate executive director for The Permanente Medical Group.

In Oregon and Northern California, Kaiser Permanente’s acute-level care at home programs provide patients with certain diagnosed conditions the opportunity to receive care outside of the traditional brick-and-mortar hospital. As Kaiser Permanente expands this care offering into more states, including Washington and Georgia, the focus is on identifying different approaches and ways to scale these programs effectively. This includes ensuring that all necessary infrastructure and personnel are in place to provide safe, high-quality care to patients in their homes and communities.

Looking to the future, creating concrete quality measures will be essential in terms of accountability and understanding what a sustainable clinical and business model could look like for hospital-at-home care, also known as advanced care at home.

Related story: “Permanente physician leaders discuss Kaiser Permanente Care at Home in The New York Times”

With the waiver extension, these programs can continue to collect data on quality, safety, and efficiency over the next 2 years. Kaiser Permanente’s advanced care at home programs have already shown lower 30-day hospital readmission rates of 7-10% compared to the national hospital average of 13%. “This translates into better patient outcomes,” Dr. Parodi said.

The successes extend beyond clinical outcomes — patients and clinicians both report high levels of satisfaction participating in the programs.

“The ability to be in your own environment with your own support system is so important to people,” said Dr. Parodi. “Physicians who work in this program consistently say they find great satisfaction in getting to know the patient at a different level than they ever had before.”

To listen to the full interview, visit Home Health Care News.