Background: Annually more than 3 million people are admitted to one of the 15,965 skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) in the United States, with 90% of admissions occurring from a hospital. Although the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) publishes several internet-based report cards, including one for nursing homes (Nursing Home Compare, NHC), they are not widely used. This is due, in part, to the complexity of the information available and the fact that the choice of nursing homes is typically made while in the hospital without access to the web-based NHC. We developed Nursing Home Compare Plus (NHCPlus) to address these limitations and to improve the decision-making process. Methods/design: This paper describes the design and rationale of a two-arm randomized controlled trial designed to test the effectiveness of NHCPlus compared to usual care only, in a sample of patients being discharged from the hospital to an SNF (N. = 229). Assessments were conducted within 24 h prior to patient discharge and 30-days post discharge. Primary outcomes to be examined included the use of NHC, increased choice of nursing homes with better reported outcomes, and increased distance between patient/family residence and nursing home. Secondary outcomes included satisfaction with the decision to go to a nursing home, confidence in the choice of nursing home, and reduced hospital length of stay. Discussion: NHCPlus is an innovative mobile application designed to allow patients to personalize their choice of nursing homes to meet their medical needs and preferences. The application to other quality report cards is discussed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pharmacology (medical)