ADVANTAGE: Long Term and Post Acute Care

A newsletter from FHCA member Vascular PRN, to give you the advantage of more information, in your quest to constantly improve your operation.

Is the Nursing Home Industry on the Verge of Collapse?

by Steve Moran

This past week Kaiser Health News published an article titled “The Coming Nursing Home Shortage” It recited the usual and well known statistics about the rapidly aging baby boomer generation.

AARP then excerpted this article with one of their own. “Strange Math: More Seniors But Fewer Nursing Homes”.

I find these articles to be annoyingly frustrating because they take a few facts and paint them in away to create alarm and ignore other facts that provide balance. Here is what is wrong with their thinking:

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Lack of Sunlight, Vitamin D Tied to Stroke Risk

By Chris Kaiser, Cardiology Editor, MedPage Today

NEW ORLEANS — Too much sunlight is bad for the skin, but not enough may be a risk factor for stroke, according to a study presented here at the American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference.

Of the more than 16,000 black and white patients followed, those who lived in areas that had shorter exposure to sunlight had a 56% increased risk of stroke, Leslie McClure, PhD, from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Ala., and colleagues found.

Interestingly, the protective benefit of sunlight was virtually eliminated in the Southeastern stroke belt and buckle, which comprises parts of the coastal plains of Georgia as well as North and South Carolina, McClure toldMedPage Today.

Full article at[email protected]&mu_id=


Kitchen safety in long-term care

by Stan Szpytek

There is no doubt that the kitchen is one of the most dynamic areas in your LTC facility vulnerable to a fire or other mishaps. Think about it for a moment: You have several employees working quickly in a well-defined space during specific times when meals are being prepared. Open flames, steam and hot surfaces dot the environment.

Then look below your feet. Spills can make the floor as slippery as an ice rink. And sharp utensils always seem to be in someone’s hands.

So we’ve established that the kitchen can be a dangerous place, but it also serves a greater purpose (outside of creating wonderful meals for your residents). The kitchen is an area within your community to develop and utilize best practices in reducing hazards and responding to emergencies.

From a safety and risk perspective, the kitchen provides us with an immediate opportunity to develop a workforce that is “cultured” to prevent potential hazards and losses. The utilization of specific procedures and best practices for kitchen operations will help safeguard your employees from injuries and protect your organization from risk exposure as well as preventable claims.

Deviation from these procedures and best practices is usually when an incident occurs. As an example, if your policy states that kitchen floors must be mopped three times per day and all spills must be immediately cleaned up, it is essential for staff to comply with these guidelines to limit the potential for an adverse event.

In respect to fire prevention, staff must specifically follow procedures to ensure that required cooking temperatures are maintained, surfaces are cleaned and free of grease build-up, handles are turned inwards to avoid knocking over a pot or pan and all measures are taken to ensure that fire does not occur.

Dietary staff should receive appropriate training regimens on a continuous basis to reinforce safety and fire prevention principles in the kitchen. In addition to knowing how to eliminate hazards and causes, staff need to know how to respond to an emergency—particularly a fire. Most fires that occur in the kitchen involve Class B materials, otherwise known as flammable liquids. Typically, these substances include oils and grease used during the cooking process. When cooking operations are left unattended or equipment fails, a Class B fire can produce extreme flame temperatures and excessive amounts of smoke. That is why most kitchens are protected with a special fire suppression system underneath exhaust hoods.

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PolyGel Portable Device for DVT Therapy Helps Patients Be Compliant After Surgery

Tampa, FL — (SBWIRE) — 02/08/2012 — Major surgical procedures are events where medical staff must be reminded that certain patients can be at higher risk for deep vein thrombosis and venous thromboembolism. Postphlebitic syndrome and pulmonary embolisms can occur in the hours, days, and weeks after a surgery. An article on Medscape recently highlighted how prophylaxis with medication and mechanical devices is critical.

“Each patient must be assessed case-by-case, but the article ‘Deep Venous Thrombosis Prophylaxis in Orthopedic Surgery’ shows that DVT therapy helped reduce DVT by 60 percent,” said Greg Grambor, president of Vascular PRN, a company that fills prescriptions for sequential compression devices and intermittent pneumatic devices for healthcare professionals nationwide.

The authors of the Medscape article showed that passive devices such as TED hose and active devices like IPC devices or venous foot pumps lessened the chance of DVT and did not add the risk of bleeding.Mechanical compression devices helped to improve blood flow and circulating fibrinolysins. Patient compliance and efficacy are the most important factors that medical professionals want out of devices.

“The latest technology is a PolyGel portable device that is only one pound, the size of a small book, and works off battery power,” said Grambor. “In the hours after surgery or for at-home care after leaving the hospital, the PolyGel Ca5 DVTCare System provides the best compliance.”

The PolyGel portable device lasts for 15 hours when used for single leg therapy and 8 hours for both legs. Since it is carried over the shoulder in a compact case,      CONTINUE READING AT


Trend Points to Soaring Knee Implant Revisions

By John Gever, Senior Editor, MedPage TodayPublished: February 13, 2012 

Reviewed by Robert Jasmer, MD; Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco and Dorothy Caputo, MA, RN, BC-ADM, CDE, Nurse Planner

SAN FRANCISCO — As more Americans in their 50s have knee replacement surgery, the nation can look forward to dramatically higher numbers of revision procedures as time goes on, a researcher warned here.

The conclusion follows almost inexorably from a new estimate of the prevalence of knee replacement in the U.S., which included (continue reading at[email protected]&mu_id=

Joint Replacement Surgery Increases the Chance of Blood Clots in Some Patients

Some patients are at a higher risk of blood clots after joint replacement surgery, especially when it comes to getting a hip or knee replaced. In late July, The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery published a study showing that at-risk patients were vulnerable to blood clots for weeks after a surgery, and in some instances more than blood thinners were needed to prevent deep vein thrombosis and more fatal consequences.
“Future studies should focus on the improvement of prophylaxis following hospital discharge, particularly among elderly patients and those with a history of cardiovascular diseases or previous clot formation,” said Dr. Alma Pedersen, the study’s author. (continue reading at


Maintaining the health of the lymphatic system following cancer treatment is one way to reduce the risk of lymphedema. Jeannette Zucker, a physical therapist and lymphedema specialist at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center,… see video at

CensusVision™ Executive Dashboards Overview for SNFs now available

by Doug Walker, VP and GM, Patient Placement Systems

We’ve just published the CensusVision™ Executive Dashboards Overview, a document of census and admissions dashboards for skilled nursing facility (SNF) executives available with the Web-based Referral Management System.

The CensusVision Executive Dashboard Overview includes extensive details pertaining to the following standard executive dashboards available within the Referral Management System:

full article at


Infection Prevention and Control in Long-Term Care

Preventing transmission of infections in a long-term care facility (LTCF) setting where residents are encouraged to be ambulatory and actively participate in group activities can be challenging. This course provides an overview of the risks of infection in the LTCF and reviews specific infections that may occur ……. complete article at :

New Therapeutic Surface for Pressure Ulcer Treatment Provides Patient Comfort and Significant Cost Savings for Facilities

Proper product utilization is crucial to lessening pressure ulcers. In the hospital and long-term care setting, it is important for medical professionals to address what is not only clinically efficacious but also reasonably priced. According to McKnight’s Long Term Care News, more than 2.5 million people develop pressure ulcers annually and approximately 60,000 die from complications due to them.

“Proper therapeutic surfaces must be implemented early on when a patient is immobile,” said Greg Grambor, president of Vascular PRN. “The latest products offer comfort, odor control, and can give the facility substantial cost savings.”

Vascular PRN recently added in the Skin IQ™ mattress coverlet – a totally new class of therapeutic surface – that gives similar results as a Low Air Loss bed but for a small percentage of the cost.           Please continue reading at:


State of Connecticut seeking nursing home to take sick, disabled prisoners

February 27, 2012

The state has been working to get people out of nursing homes, but officials are hoping that at least one facility will be open to taking a new group of residents — parolees and patients from state institutions.

Like many states, Connecticut has a growing population of older prisoners whose care, officials say, could be provided less expensively outside prison. The state already has legal mechanisms to parole inmates who are “physically incapable of presenting a danger to society,” but they’re rarely used, and Department of Correction staff often struggle to find nursing homes willing to take prisoners who could be paroled if suitable placements were available.

Many states facing budget woes have contemplated ways to parole inmates who need long-term or hospice care, but research suggests that few have been released.

“Given that many state policymakers have expressed an intention to permit the release of elderly inmates who are not a threat to public safety, it is remarkable that geriatric release policies have had little impact,” Tina Chiu, director of technical assistance for the New York-based Vera Institute of Justice, wrote in a 2010 report.

In seeking to contract with a nursing home for about 95 beds, Connecticut officials say they’re hoping to develop a workable pipeline when the number of people expected to use it is relatively small, rather than relying on case-by-case efforts to find beds for sick or disabled inmates when there are more in the system.

“Unless we try and deal with it now, it’ll be unmanageable, unaffordable 10 years from now,” said Michael Lawlor, undersecretary for criminal justice at the Office of Policy and Management, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s budget office.

Earlier this month, the state departments of correction, social services and mental health and addiction services issued a request for proposalsfor nursing homes willing …..           please continue reading at


10 Personal Qualities Required for an Aged Care Worker

An aged care job is one of the most demanding and challenging healthcare job which every healthcare professional do not find easy to do. Being an aged care professional, you need to have certain key qualities which would help you in performing your job in a better way. In most of the countries, the numbers of aged people are on a rapid rise and this is certainly a positive sign for those aiming for a health career in aged care.

The reality is that the number of experienced and qualified aged care workers are very much low when compared with the actual demand. Most of the developed and developing countries have become  ……. please continue reading at


Dining Takes Center Stage in Health Care Communities

Health care communities are making person-centered dining programs the center of attraction! Nursing homes and assisted living facilities alike are embracing the concept of changing their internal culture from institutional-based care to person-centered care where the individual is at the center of making decisions about their daily lives. Dining can be an important part of the transition to person centered care, and can in fact, dining can take center stage in a facility’s culture change movement. Do you know what the goals of culture change are?  Continue reading at:


Reopening the Debate Over How to Pay for Long-Term Care Services

By Howard Gleckman on March 15th, 2012

Since last year’s demise of the CLASS Act, those of us worried about how the U.S. will finance the long-term care needs of the frail elderly and younger adults with disabilities have been looking for an opportunity to reopen the issue. Today, in a small first step in that direction, about two dozen state and federal officials, advocates, insurance company executives, and researchers met privately for almost six hours to exchange ideas.  Please continue reading at