Kent Hospital offers R.I.’s first hospital at home program

WARWICK – Kent County Memorial Hospital now offers the first hospital at home program in the state.

Approved last week by the R.I. Department of Health, the program allows patients to receive acute hospital-level care in their homes. Patients are admitted to the program during either an emergency room visit or hospital stay, and must be evaluated by a doctor first.

“As a geriatrician, to be able to offer acute hospital-level care at home for our older adults who prefer it, after years of seeing the adverse outcomes of multiple transitions of care for older adults, is amazing. I’m so proud of the work Kent Hospital has done to become an age-friendly health system, and now the first hospital in Rhode Island to be able to offer acute hospital care at home,” said Dr. Ana Tuya Fulton, executive chief of geriatrics and palliative care for Care New England Health System and health system chief medical officer for Integra Community Care Network. “Care at home is the future, and the Kent team looks forward to building this option and sharing lessons learned with other systems of care, both local and national.”

Kent joins Brigham & Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital as the third hospital in New England to earn approval for a hospital at home program. The programs have also been green-lighted by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

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Program requirements include daily visits and check-ins with nurses and doctors, and hospitals must submit monthly reports to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services on quality metrics.

“There are many strains that are putting hospitals throughout the country near – or at – capacity for patient care,” said Dr. Nicole Alexander-Scott, director of the R.I. Department of Health. “Kent Hospital has presented a comprehensive plan that details how eligible patients will receive the clinical care and ancillary services they need in a place that is familiar, comfortable and conducive to healing. This is a model that other hospitals can replicate as we explore innovative ways to bring quality care to all Rhode Islanders in the most appropriate setting.”

Elizabeth Graham is a PBN contributing writer.

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