Predictive Analytics Gives Hospices A Lens Into Quality, Compliance

Hospices are leveraging predictive analytics to get a clearer picture of their performance amid regulatory pressures.

Hospices have relied on data to enhances their ability to assess the quality and quantity of bedside care delivered during a patients’ final days.

This includes two key quality measures: Hospice Visits in the Last Days of Life (HVLDL) and the Hospice Care Index (HCI).

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) designed the HCI tool to paint a picture of care processes that occur between a patient’s admission and discharge. Whereas the HVLDL metric specifically assesses the last three days of life, as well as any respite, continuous home and inpatient care services.

Using data gathered from predictive analytics systems can give hospices an advantage when it comes to performance on these measures, particularly during the last week of life, according to Charlotte Mather, vice president of nursing operations at Dallas-based AccentCare. This patient data can be especially important when it comes to compliance around the HVLDL metric provided, she said.

“Predictive analytics have been a game changer for helping us deliver excellent care at the right time when the patient needs us most,” Mather told Hospice News. “It allows us some insight to deliver quality care and outcomes and gives us a lens into how we can do that in real time so that we’re getting to the bedside when they need us most. That helps with the HVLDL metric and the last three days of life, and also impacts our quality scores, because we’re building that relationship with them all throughout their journey and ramping up intensity as we get to those final days for the patient and the family.”

AccentCare is a portfolio company of the private equity firm Advent International that provides hospice, palliative care, personal care, non-medical services, home health, care management and high-acuity home care. The company operates more than 250 locations in 30 states and in the District of Columbia, caring for roughly 200,000 patients and families annually.

Last year AccentCare began using Nashville-based Medalogix’s predictive analytics software platform to better understand patient and family needs at the end of life, particularly during the last week. AccentCare utilizes Medalogix’s Muse digital health care platform, which collects data on patient vital signs, pain assessments, medication changes, physician narratives and other staff/bedside notes, among other data. Algorithms use more than 900 different data points to rank patients on a scale to predict when they may need more intensive services during the last seven-to-12 days of life.

AccentCare piloted the technology at certain locations in 2022 before systematically rolling it out across all its hospice locations. The larger roll out occurred after the company observed a positive impact on their quality Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) scores, according to Mather.

Machine-learning technology can give hospice providers expanded visibility into patient conditions and overall experiences as they reach the most critical stages at the end of life, she said.

“It’s all data driven, taking anything we document about a patient and allowing us to adjust our care with that patient and their family,” Mather said. “It marries the science pieces of predictive analytics, machine learning and AI with the art and science of delivering end-of-life health care. If we know when a patient is going to die in the next seven-to-12 days because of where they ‘risked-out’ at a 90% higher chance on the dashboard, then that allows us to make sure we’re supporting them with the right disciplines at the bedside.”

Hospices are increasingly using predictive analytics systems to build their census and ensure that patients and families receive the right care at the right time as quality metrics take a spotlight in compliance and reimbursement.

Among the hospices making investments in analytics is Wisconsin-based Sharon S. Richardson Community Hospice. Established in 2007, the nonprofit hospice today announced a new partnership with health and community care technology company WellSky Hospice & Palliative.

Integrating the tech company’s predictive analytics software and tools is a move towards improving quality and timely end-of-life care, according to Marilyn Masi, senior director of innovation and financial sustainability at the hospice.

Using predictive technology is expected to help clinicians make more data-driven care decisions throughout the documentation processes, according to the hospice. The technology includes measures that help predict a patient’s seven-day mortality risk.

This technology will increase the hospice’s ability to reach new patients quicker across its five-county service region while improving overall operational efficiency, Masi indicated in a recent announcement

“We’re thrilled to have found a technology partner that will support us in this mission, providing the tools we need to deliver the highest quality care to as many patients and families as possible,” Masi said. “Our promise to provide compassionate care and quality of life to all those in need is the cornerstone of our organization.”


Predictive Analytics ‘Gives Hospices a Lens’ into Quality, Compliance – Hospice News