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SDAHO Provides Discussion on Hospital to Nursing Home Transitions at Rural Health Leaders Conference

The South Dakota Association of Healthcare Organizations is gearing up for the 2023 Rural Health Leaders Conference, taking place June 27 – 28 at Drifters in Ft. Pierre, South Dakota.

Anita Dunham

This year’s conference will focus on a variety of issues important to our state’s rural health executives. One of those sessions will focus on the process of transitioning a patient from a hospital to a nursing home. Anita Dunham, MS, RN, CMAC, CDP, the Systems Director of Case Management with Monument Health will present: A Collaborative Approach to Manage Hospital to Nursing Home Transitions.

Transitions can be challenging for patients who meet the criteria for nursing home placement, whether the patient needs a short-term or long-term stay. Anita will share examples of how one organization was faced with hospital capacity issues and patient flow challenges that were further impacted by a 19.3% readmission rate for this population. This necessitated case management partnering with the providers, multidisciplinary team, and community facilities to coordinate individualized patient plans with a focus on safe transitions. Attendees will learn key strategies to implement a community Geriatric Forum Collaborative that can be utilized in multiple health care settings that leverages the electronic medical record, standardized expectations, and regulatory compliance for both hospitals and nursing homes.

There are three key learning objectives:

  1. Review the processes for creating the Geriatric Forum Collaborative and integrating improvement strategies.
  2. Discuss regulatory requirements that impact transitions in care including a formalized Nursing Home Transfer Agreement.
  3. Describe standardized workflows and the sustainability plan for continued success.

In addition to the discussion with Anita Dunham on care transitions, this year’s Rural Health Leaders Conference will offer the following featured sessions:

  • Workforce Updates for 2022 Rural Health Leaders Conference: Building a Strong Future for Nursing in South Dakota – Starting Now’ was the topic at SDAHO’s 2022 Rural Health Leaders conference. Leaders from SDAHO will kick off this session with a recap of this discussion and provide an update on workforce initiatives taking place within the state.
  • The New Future of Rural Healthcare: Strategies for Success: In his presentation Future of Rural Healthcare: Strategies for Success, Stroudwater Director, Eric Shell takes an in-depth look at the industry as a whole and at the particular struggle faced by rural and community hospitals, and outlines strategies for these facilities to not only survive but thrive in the fast-approaching era of population health. This presentation is a valuable tool for healthcare leaders seeking the best strategy to guide their facilities across the “shaky bridge” from fee-for-service to reimbursement based on value and quality.
  • Sustainability of Healthcare Organizations: A Plan of Action: This discussion will emphasize the necessity of understanding the key potential and existing operational and cost problem areas for healthcare system growth and sustainability as healthcare providers continue to face future operational, reimbursement, and environmental challenges. The primary goal of this discussion is to provide an overview of the models of current successes and solutions with a focus on a realistic plan of action.
  • South Dakota Medicaid Eligibility & Enrollment: Changes are coming to South Dakota Medicaid in 2023! During this session, the Department of Social Services will provide updates on Medicaid expansion, eligibility, and other upcoming changes.


Registration is per person and includes sessions on June 27 and 28, networking social, breakfast and lunch, and continuing education hours for long-term care administrators.

Registration is $200 for SDAHO member facility staff and $300 for non-member facility staff. Visit sdaho.org/rural-health-leaders-conference to register.

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