Meeting Medicare requirements for transitional care: Do stroke care and policy align?

Janet Prvu Bettger, Sara B. Jones, Anna M. Kucharska-Newton, Janet K. Freburger, Sylvia W. Coleman, Laurie H. Mettam, Mysha E. Sissine, Sabina B. Gesell, Cheryl D. Bushnell, Pamela W. Duncan, Wayne D. Rosamond

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


ObjectiveThis study (1) describes transitional care for stroke patients discharged home from hospitals, (2) compares hospitals' standards of transitional care with core transitional care management (TCM) components recognized by Medicare, and (3) examines the association of policy and hospital specialty designations with TCM implementation.MethodsHospitals participating in the Comprehensive Post-Acute Stroke Services (COMPASS) Study provided data on their hospital, stroke patient population, and standards of transitional care. Hospital-reported transitional care strategies were compared with the federal TCM definition (2-day follow-up, 14-day visit, non-face-to-face services). We examined the associations of TCM billing, stroke center certification, and Magnet nursing excellence designation with TCM implementation.ResultsTransitional care varied widely among 41 hospitals in North Carolina and no one strategy was universally applied or provided across hospitals. One third of hospitals met the TCM definition (37% provided telephone follow-up, 76% provided face-to-face provider follow-up, all provided a type of non-face-to-face support). There were no differences between groups (TCM met/not met) in hospital characteristics or transitional care resources and processes. Stroke center certification, Magnet designation, and use of TCM billing codes were not different for hospitals that did and did not meet the TCM definition.ConclusionsThere was substantial variation in the provision of strategies supporting stroke patients' transition home from the hospital. Supportive stroke care transitions are essential when more than 50% of stroke patients are discharged home and more than half experience moderate to severe strokes. More research is needed to identify drivers of TCM identifierNCT02588664.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)427-434
Number of pages8
Issue number9
StatePublished - Feb 26 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 American Academy of Neurology.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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