Three leading local care providers are launching a year-long pilot program to test and research an innovative model for post-acute patient care coordination in Dallas County.
The three partners—the Visiting Nurse Association of Texas, UT Southwestern Medical Center, and Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas—will join forces to provide daily, home-delivered meals for high-risk patients recently discharged from the hospital.
The collaborative pilot will integrate the VNA’s Meals on Wheels daily nutritious meals, critical safety checks, and social and clinical support into a care continuum to help vulnerable patients, especially seniors, stay in their homes.
The program’s long-term aim is to reduce hospital readmission rates, improve health outcomes, and help patients age in their homes. The collaboration also is intended to create a replicable operational model that could be adapted across the country.
“Providing daily nourishment, social contact, and safety checks for vulnerable high-risk patients is critical to strengthening our community and reducing medical costs,” Katherine Krause, the VNA’s president and CEO, said in a news release.
Funding for the pilot will come from the Kozmetsky Family Foundation, an Austin-based private grant-making foundation, and Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas.
A VNA spokesperson says the Kozmetsky grant totals $100,000 for the year-long pilot at UT Southwestern, and that Texas Health Presbyterian will pay a per-patient fee of $10 for each meal and safety check. The pilot program will average between 15 and 30 patients per month per health system, the spokesperson added, “depending on the need and flow of patients.”
UT Southwestern will evaluate program outcomes and report back to the funders and the community in 2019.