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Is There Anything We Can Do if a Hospital Wants to Discharge My Father to a Nursing Home Instead of to an Inpatient Rehab Facility?

  • February 27th, 2020
Q
My father had a stroke last week, and the hospital he is in wants to discharge him to the local nursing home, which has a bed for rehab. Our family wants him to go to an inpatient rehab facility for more intense physical therapy than he can get at a nursing home. The hospital is putting pressure on my mother and father to go to the nursing home rather than an inpatient facility, because it is easier for them and the bed is available. We feel he would have a better recovery at an inpatient facility, where he can get at least three hours of rehab daily. What are our rights?
A

This is a difficult and not unusual situation. The Medicare payment structure provides incentives for hospitals to discharge patients as soon as safely possible. The hospitals then put pressure on patients and their families to accept discharges to places that may not be optimal. Fortunately, there are some ways to delay hospital discharges, even if by a few days, which could give you more time to advocate for the inpatient rehab. The hospital may give your father a notice of non-coverage saying that Medicare will end if he does not move out. The first thing to know is that he can stay until he receives this written notice. Second, he can appeal it. The notice itself describes the method for doing so. Making the appeal should get him a couple more days of Medicare coverage in the hospital.

For more information about fighting a hospital discharge, click here.

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For more information about appealing a Medicare decision, click here.

The Center for Medicare Advocacy has a lot of information on its website about how to enforce Medicare rights: https://www.medicareadvocacy.org/

 


Last Modified: 02/27/2020

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