TruPharmacy News: March Edition
Guidance for Infection Control and Prevention Concerning Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) by Hospice Agencies
CMS is committed to protecting American patients by ensuring health care facilities have up-to-date information to adequately respond to COVID-19 concerns.
• Coordination with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local public health departments – We encourage all Hospice Agencies to monitor the CDC website for updated information and resources and contact their local health department when needed (CDC Resources for Health Care Facilities: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/healthcare-facilities/index.html)…
• Hospice Guidance and Actions – CMS regulations and guidance support Hospice Agencies taking appropriate action to address potential and confirmed COVID cases and mitigate transmission including screening, treatment, and transfer to higher-level care (when appropriate). This guidance applies to both Medicare and Medicaid providers.
Study: Medication Diversion is Occurring in Hospice
Medication diversion in hospice is a growing concern, especially in light of the opioid epidemic.
Over 90% of hospice and palliative care patients are prescribed opioid medications for pain management, and many individuals receive home care.1 Prescription medications at home can be a source of diversion among family and friends, especially those with a history of substance abuse. Pharmacists can play an important role in managing patients’ pain as well as preventing drug diversion. In a study published in JAMA, a national survey of hospices was conducted…