HealthTrust announces the awarding of an Innovation Grant to University of Miami Health Care to build a “Life Skills Gym” to help joint replacement patients practice typical home activities in preparation for discharge.

The award was presented during the 2016 HealthTrust University Conference in San Antonio.

The Life Skills Gym will include a residential-style kitchen and bed, training bathroom, car transfer simulator, L-shaped stairs, fitness equipment, WOW Computer, and big-screen TV for educational demonstrations.

University of Miami Health Care plans to incorporate the Life Skills Gym as part of the inpatient standard of care for total hip and knee replacement patients at the University of Miami Hospital, and as part of the discharge plans for spine and orthopedic oncology patients.

The aim is to help patients improve their functionality and confidence, and overcome their fear, according to a media release from HealthTrust.

“Fear of not being able to perform activities of daily living, such as taking a shower or climbing stairs, is the reason many total joint patients get sent to a skilled nursing or in-patient rehabilitation facility upon discharge from the hospital,” says Michael Schlosser, MD, chief medical officer for HealthTrust, in the release.

“By improving the confidence of patients recovering at home, we expect the Life Skills Gym will reduce overutilization of post-acute care with no negative impact on outcomes. And that’s a key objective of every hospital operating in an increasingly value-based care environment,” he adds.

In addition to helping to procure the items for the Life Skills Gym, HealthTrust will advise University of Miami Health Care on managing the overall care episodes for total hip and knee replacement patients, and identify evidence-based approaches to improving supply utilization. The project will also provide a best-practice toolkit for other HealthTrust members interested in building a similar type of Life Skills Gym to follow, per the release.

[Source(s): HealthTrust, Business Wire]