Early last week, we received Interact data from a number of facilities participating in our Point of Care Program.  Analyzing a 12 month period, the 30-Day Readmission Rate has shown significant improvement.  Facilities experienced a decrease of 30% in the Post-Acute hospital readmission rate.

Aculabs began developing its Point of Care Program in 2014.  With acuity levels on the rise and reimbursements falling, a new approach to the traditional laboratory service model was required.  The Turkish proverb “if the mountain won’t come to Muhammad, then Muhammad must go to the mountain,” came to mind. Realizing that there are certain geographical as well as financial limitations, Aculabs began to invest in Point of Care to facilitate quicker turnaround times.

Compared to the control group, facilities using the program saw drops in readmission rates as high as 30%.

“No one feels the impact more than the laboratory. Since 60-70 percent of all critical decisions involve laboratory tests, increasing acuity puts a tremendous strain on our ability to provide phlebotomy services necessary to effectively treat our patients,” Dr. Rita Khoury, medical director said.

Aculabs developed an integrated approach to the Point of Care Delivery Model.  Administrative functions, validation, ordering, result correlation in real time and EMR integration are all made part of the program.  The program was designed as a fully turnkey solution to meet the needs of our clients.

However, this innovative new way of thinking was not without certain hurdles.  The disparity between federal and state regulations precluded the use of certain waived tests. Although recognized by the FDA and in use in neighboring states, many tests were not recognized by the State of New Jersey Department of Health as being waived. The first objective was to modernize state regulations to mimic the federal guidelines surrounding waived testing.  The regulations, dating back to 1988, did not allow clinicians to take advantage of the technological advancements of the past 26 years.

After two years, and a failed presidential bid, Governor Christie finally signed S976 into law and the regulations governing waived testing were modernized.  In Q4 2017, Aculabs began enrolling facilities into our Point of Care Program.  By October 2017, seven facilities incorporated the Aculabs Point of Care Program into their facility workflows and the clinical decision making process.

Twelve months of Interact© data taken from Point Click Care was reviewed and analyzed.  During the six month period prior to the facilities enrolling in the program, the facilities averaged a Post-Acute 30 Day readmission rate of 19.71% for the months April 2017 thru Sept 2017. Post enrollment, from October 2017 until March 2018, the facilities averaged a Post-Acute 30 Day readmission rate of 13.89%. This represents a 30% decrease. This percentage improves to 12.36%, or a 37% decrease, if October’s results are mitigated (being that clinicians were still accustomed to old workflows). In contrast, our control facilities maintained a 22% average during both six month periods.

  “The decrease in readmission rate makes sense since clinicians rely heavily upon diagnostics to make informed decisions,” Aculabs president Pete Gudaitis said.  “Being able to provide clinicians the results they need in minutes NOT hours has a tremendous effect on the ability to treat.  Conditions such as dehydration, anemia, renal failure/insufficiency and bleeds can all be diagnosed at the bedside within minutes.”

Aculabs Point of Care Program is expanding to ten additional sites. We anticipate roll outs to take place within the next 30 to 45 days.  During this time, we will continue to gather more data and provide additional insight into the effects of our program.

In the near future (projected Q3 2018), Aculabs is going to expand its test menu to include a Complete Blood Count (CBC) with a 3 part automated differential. The expectation is that, with the combination of a Chem8+panel and a 3-part CBC, our Point of Care Program should be able to help reduce the hospital readmission rate even further.

For more information regarding our Point of Care Program, please contact your customer service representative.