Care transition to skilled nursing facility – A model and a case study

Mohan Tanniru, Jacqueline Jones, Samer Kazziha, Michelle Hornberger


Background: Healthcare providers have focused on improving patient care transitions to reduce unanticipated readmission costs, improve patient care quality post-discharge and increase patient satisfaction. This is especially true in US since the introduction of the Affordable Care Act. While there are several practices and evidence-based programs discussed in the literature to address care transition post-discharge, the key challenge remains the same – how to structure the care transition program to influence its effectiveness. In this paper, we focus on modeling one particular care transition – moving a patient from a hospital to a skilled nursing facility (SNF) – and discuss how improved capacity building and use of intermediaries such as advanced nurse practitioners have shown promise in reducing patient readmissions.

Method: The methodology proposed here uses service dominant (SD) logic research to inductively derive a model for service exchanges between the two provider ecosystems. This model is then used to analyze service gaps and look for opportunities to innovate within an SNF and improve its capacity to deliver care. Use of intermediation that expands the service model with the addition of more care providers besides the hospital and SNF is also discussed to reduce patient readmissions.   

Results: The study demonstrates that a number of actors have to work collaboratively to make care transition effective in meeting the patient and provider goals. Specifically, when two care facilities, hospital and SNF, are involved in care transition, opportunities exist to improve their internal capacity to address care within and across facilities.    

Conclusion: The paper makes two important contributions. It shows the role of SD Logic in identifying opportunities for service innovations in support of care transition, and it shows the role of actors in provider-customer ecosystems to make the transition effective.    

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Journal of Hospital Administration

ISSN 1927-6990(Print)   ISSN 1927-7008(Online)

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