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Coalition Founded to Address Crisis of Fragmented Senior Health Care

Posted on 10/3/2006 by NTOCC ® in Press Releases

Bridgewater, New Jersey – The Case Management Society of America (CMSA) and sanofi-aventis U.S. LLC today announced the establishment of the National Transitions of Care Coalition (NTOCC) to improve the quality of care between health care settings particularly for seniors. This joint project will address a serious U.S. health care issue: filling the gaps that occur when patients leave one care setting and move to another care setting. Transitions include patients moving from primary care to specialty physicians; moving or transferring patients from the emergency department to intensive care or surgery; or when patients are discharged from the hospital to home, assisted living arrangement or skilled nursing facilities.

The U.S. health care system often fails to meet the needs of elderly patient populations during these transitions because care is rushed and responsibility is fragmented with little communication across care settings or multiple providers. In addition, too much responsibility and burden is placed on patients and their families in initiating their own follow-up care with little understanding of their own conditions or the complexities of today’s health care system. There is increasing awareness among health care professionals and government leaders that the U.S. health care system must focus efforts on improving the coordination of care among the various care settings to improve patient safety, quality of care and outcomes. This is a challenging task that will require enormous collaboration.

The focus of the NTOCC is to bring together thought leaders and health care participants from various settings to address this critical issue. The NTOCC will define solutions and develop tools to address the gaps impacting safety and quality of care for transitioning patients, particularly seniors and make these tools available to the health care industry.

"We firmly believe that case managers are essential in establishing effective communication for coordination of care between health care participants," said Connie Commander, 2006-2007 President of CMSA. "The Coalition will be the forum to bring all the stakeholders together and work through the issues and develop realistic solutions. CMSA is honored to lead NTOCC in coordinating our efforts as health care providers to successfully meet the needs of our senior population and ensure appropriate synchronization of services, enhanced medication adherence, improved patient self-management skills and better outcomes for our patients."

Tim Rothwell, President and CEO of sanofi-aventis U.S. LLC, said: "Sanofi-aventis is supporting the National Transitions of Care Coalition (NTOCC) and its multidisciplinary team of health care leaders to address complex issues like health literacy, patient safety and non-adherence. At sanofi-aventis, patients are at the center of all we do. Our mission is to fight for patient’s health and well being - because health matters. If we fail to help patients understand why they need to take medications, or how to take them, it can lead to non-adherence. Non adherence can lead to increased emergency room visits, admittance or re-admittance to hospitals, longer hospital stays, higher health care costs and even life-threatening situations. We believe the work of this Coalition will play a vital role for health care professionals, patients, caregivers, and payers."

CMSA is currently confirming participants to NTOCC which will hold an initial meeting on October 18 in Chicago, Illinois. This meeting will result in the creation of working groups to address transitions of care issues in the areas of evidenced based guidelines, patient assessment, education, medication adherence and reconciliation, appropriate documentation for information transfers and communication. Over the coming months the Coalition will create critically needed tools, training and guidelines to improve transitions of care across all care settings.


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About National Transitions of Care Coalition (NTOCC)
NTOCC was formed in 2006 to address a serious U.S. health care issue: filling the gaps that occur when patients leave one care setting and move to another care setting.  These transitions include patients moving from primary care to specialty physicians; moving or transferring patients from the emergency department to intensive care or surgery; or when patients are discharged from the hospital to home, assisted living arrangements, or skilled nursing facilities.  The U.S. healthcare system often fails to meet the needs of elderly patient populations during these transitions because care is rushed and responsibility is fragmented with little communication across care settings and multiple providers.  These failures lead to undue burdens on patients and their families and negatively impact patient safety, quality of care and outcomes.  The focus of NTOCC is to bring together thought leaders and health care experts from various settings to address this critical issue, define solutions and develop tools to address the gaps impacting patient care.  Tools and resources developed by NTOCC will be made available to everyone in the health care industry including providers, payers, patients and consumers.  NTOCC is chaired and coordinated by the Case Management Society of America and sponsored by sanofi-aventis U.S. LLC. Visit www.ntocc.org.

About sanofi-aventis
Sanofi-aventis, a leading global pharmaceutical company, discovers, develops and distributes therapeutic solutions to improve the lives of everyone. Sanofi-aventis is listed in Paris (EURONEXT : SAN) and in New York (NYSE : SNY). Visit www.sanofi-aventis.us or www.sanofi-aventis.com.

About Case Management Society of America (CMSA)
Established in 1990, the Case Management Society of America is an international non-profit 501(c)(6) multi-disciplinary professional association dedicated to the support and advancement of the case management profession through educational forums, networking opportunities, legislative advocacy, and establishing standards to advance the profession. It is based in Little Rock, AR, and serves more than 20,000 members/subscribers and 70 affiliate and pending chapters. Since its inception, CMSA has been at the forefront of setting professional standards for the industry, which allows for the highest level of efficiency and integrity, as well as developing national and local leaders who are recognized for their practice and professional excellence. For more information on CMSA, call CMSA at (501) 225-2229 or go to www.cmsa.org.