With hospital re-admissions costing the health care system more than $15 billion a year, a health coaching experiment in southern Ohio is aiming to lower the rate of returns by visiting patients at home.

The Care Transitions program, managed by the Council on Aging of Southwest Ohio, visits patients in their daily environment for the first few weeks after they are discharged from the hospital, helping to organize medicines, prepare healthy meals and find transportation to a doctor’s appointment. By being able to complete these tasks, patients will theoretically be less likely to need another trip to the hospital.

Since the program began in mid-2012, only 8.6% of about 900 Medicare patients in the program have been readmitted to five area hospitals within 30 days. Meanwhile, Medicare patients not involved in the program were readmitted at a rate of 21.3% to the same hospitals.

Medicare estimates up to $12 billion could be prevented with better follow-up care for patients.

“There’s only so much the hospital can do,” said Kim Clark, the program’s manager at the Council on Aging. “The goal is to coach them so they understand, ‘What do I need to do when I’m by myself?'” Read the full story here:

IN-DEPTH: Helping patients at home keeps them out of hospital

An uninformed patient is one of the most prevalent causes of medical malpractice nationwide. Through increased education and investing time and thoughtful care into each and every patient, hopefully hospitals will be able to decrease the rate at which medical mistakes are currently made.

If you or a family member believe you have a medical malpractice case, contact Crandall & Pera Law today for a free case evaluation. Crandall & Pera Law is available to help answer your questions and guide you in determining your next steps.