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Published on October 14, 2013

Ahead of the Curve

October 14, 2013

It’s been all over the news lately: the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or as some know it: Obamacare. No matter what you call it, the new healthcare law is causing a sizeable shift in the healthcare landscape all around us.

KishHealth Sstem is well positioned to integrate its mission with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (PPACA’s) emphasis on preventive care.

“Our Community Wellness Department was in place at Kishwaukee and Valley West Hospitals long before the PPACA existed, meaning we were able to fit the department and its programs into our vision for the future seamlessly when the law was enacted,” said Michael Kulisz, DO, KishHealth System chief medical officer. “Now our focus is on the health of certain populations, including children. In the future, the most important aspect of healthcare will not be managing episodic illnesses within the walls of the hospital, but enhancing the preventive care of populations in communities.”

For individuals wishing to take control of their health, enrolling in classes offered at Kishwaukee and Valley West Hospitals and other health system locations, through Community Wellness is a great place to start. Classes and programs cover a variety of topics including:

 

Preparing for the Future of Healthcare

As hospitals increasingly focus on reducing admissions, KishHealth System is exploring partnerships with resources – including skilled nursing facilities, rehabilitation centers, and home health services – in local communities to strengthen its continuum of care.

“Our questions are: ‘What can we do to prevent individuals, as much as possible, from having to return to the hospital for care? How can we better use our community resources?’ “says Pamela Duffy, RN, vice president of Patient Care Services and chief nursing officer for KishHealth System. “When patients have to spend time in hospitals, we want to ensure they continue on the path to wellness after they leave. For example, we place phone calls to them after discharged to learn if they’re taking – or have even filled – their prescriptions.”

KishHealth System is working on two long-term projects that will transform the way individuals manage their health, including the recently launched patient portal, MyKishHealth, allowing patients to access their medical records electronically and continue wellness education post-discharge. Also on the horizon is the development of a medical wellness center, giving DeKalb County a new destination for preventive care.

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