Touchstone Communities – San Antonio, Texas

May 30, 2024

Touchstone Communities

Touchstone Communities in Post-Acute Healthcare

 

Leading the medical path by adapting to the changing needs of the industry

In the ever-evolving healthcare landscape, adaptability is not just an asset; it’s a necessity. As Medicare policies shift, regulatory demands grow, and the healthcare environment becomes increasingly complex, organizations must navigate and thrive within these changes.

Lana Blagg, Vice President of Clinical Services

One organization making waves in this arena is Touchstone Communities, a leader in post-acute care. Leslie Campbell, Chief Operating Officer; Lana Blagg, Vice President of Clinical Services; and Jennifer Palmer, Vice President of Clinical IT Systems and Analysis, spearhead this conversation. Their collective insights shed light on Touchstone’s proactive approach to navigating these changes, highlighting its commitment to improvement and exceptional healthcare delivery.

People, processes, and technology

Campbell’s revelation that Touchstone had astutely anticipated these industry shifts as early as 2020 is a testament to the company’s foresight and proactive planning. The forward-thinking approach prompted the company to embark on a strategic journey, focusing on three key pillars: people, processes, and technology. The deliberate additions of top-tier leaders Blagg and Palmer to enhance expertise in clinical services and IT systems have propelled Touchstone toward a paradigm shift in care delivery.

Campbell’s dedication to attracting top talent goes beyond recruitment; it embodies Touchstone’s commitment to fostering exceptional standards throughout the organization. By carefully selecting individuals who resonate with Touchstone’s values, Campbell instills a culture of outstanding performance that infuses every aspect of its operations. Blagg and Palmer, distinguished leaders in their respective fields, enrich Touchstone with their extensive experience and expertise, strengthening its clinical analytics and technology capabilities. Touchstone has become is an easy place for nurses to work and hospitals to partner with by reducing administrative burden and streamlining processes.

The collaborative efforts have driven operational efficiencies and optimized organizational processes. Through innovative approaches and strategic utilization of technology, Blagg and Palmer have led initiatives aimed at simplifying documentation requirements and leveraging cutting-edge tools to elevate the standard of patient care.

Harnessing technological advancements

Technology is central to driving innovation and enhancing patient outcomes, from AI-driven analytics to integrated Electronic Health Record (EHR) platforms. Palmer passionately discusses Touchstone’s collaboration with Carefeed, a partnership that has developed communication and documentation processes. By streamlining workflows and reducing administrative burdens, Carefeed has afforded Touchstone’s staff more time and focus for direct patient care.

Palmer further emphasizes the tangible clinical benefits of these advancements, stating, “We’ve significantly reduced our referral response time to within 15 to 20 minutes in the majority of cases.” This strategy has changed Touchstone’s discharge planning processes from when a patient is referred. Instead of laboriously navigating through extensive documentation, the system efficiently extracts crucial keywords and criteria, providing a comprehensive overview of each patient’s needs and next destination.

This simplified approach facilitates a smoother transition from acute to post-acute care, prioritizing patient safety and well-being throughout recovery. Touchstone aims to enhance overall outcomes and safety standards by initiating discharge planning early and maintaining oversight. Palmer adds, “Identifying key criteria and extracting essential data from referral documents ensures seamless patient care transitions.”

However, Touchstone recognizes that technology alone cannot address all challenges, emphasizing collaboration and partnership’s importance in driving meaningful change. Campbell highlights Touchstone’s strong relationships with industry partners such as Aegis Therapies, Healthcare Services Group, and Carvajal Pharmacy. These alliances enable Touchstone to leverage expertise and resources beyond its organization, ultimately benefiting patients and residents alike.

Shaping the future of healthcare

Leslie Campbell, Chief Operating Officer

As the future of healthcare unfolds, organizations like Touchstone emerge as pioneers within the industry. The path is defined by forward-thinking leadership, a commitment to advancement, and a pursuit of operational quality. Touchstone is a compelling example of addressing challenges with ingenuity and empathy, especially in post-acute healthcare. By embracing passion, creativity, and authentic patient care values, Touchstone continually sets higher standards for quality care delivery in a dynamically changing healthcare environment.

The journey to success has been anything but easy. The healthcare landscape constantly changes, shaped by dynamic demographic shifts, evolving reimbursement models, and rapid technological progress. For Touchstone, navigating these changes demands adaptability, foresight, agility, and a bold readiness to challenge norms.

A significant challenge facing Touchstone and the entire healthcare industry is the shift from traditional Medicare to managed care models. As Campbell highlights, this transition brings implications for operational strategies and financial sustainability. With managed care providers offering lower reimbursement rates and shorter patient stays, healthcare providers must revamp their models to ensure ongoing viability amid changing reimbursement dynamics. Touchstone offsets these challenges by using a web-based solution dedicated to managing managed care contracts and case management, managed care MASTER, which helps streamline case management processes and optimize managed care reimbursements.

Challenging the status quo

Touchstone has embarked on a thorough transformation journey in response to the significant challenges ahead. This effort extends beyond operational changes; it represents a change in mindset and strategy. Campbell emphasizes the importance of assembling a top-tier leadership team to propel this transformation. By enlisting seasoned experts such as Blagg and Palmer, Touchstone strategically positions itself as a leader in innovation and quality within the healthcare sector.

Blagg and Palmer further echo Campbell’s sentiments, stressing the imperative of challenging conventional norms and focusing on core priorities. For Blagg, this entails thoroughly reevaluating existing processes and protocols to ensure alignment with ever-evolving regulatory standards, all while enhancing the caliber of care provided.

Jennifer Palmer, Vice President of Clinical IT Systems and Analysis

Meanwhile, Palmer’s focus lay in harnessing the power of technology to streamline operations and maximize efficiency throughout Touchstone’s operations. Their collective efforts underline Touchstone’s commitment to adaptability and continuous improvement in the face of evolving industry dynamics.

Campbell offers insights into the company’s future trajectory and expansion plans, stating, “We’re building something that’ll be around a lot longer than we are.” Reflecting on Touchstone’s ethos of longevity and forward-thinking, Campbell highlights ongoing investments in growth and innovation, emphasizing, “We’re in the process of a pretty significant acquisition right now that’s expected to go live on May 1st.”

Furthermore, Touchstone’s venture into the iSNP model and the imminent launch of a technological platform underlines its commitment to advancing care delivery. Campbell notes, “This strategic move aligns with our vision of enhancing service offerings and market presence.”

Touchstone aims to carve a niche in diverse healthcare landscapes by leveraging targeted market evaluations. Campbell states, “We’re launching a technological platform that we believe will be a differentiator in every market, allowing us to care for more residents and patients safely and efficiently.”

Campbell proudly highlights, “From the upcoming opening of a facility in Brownsville, Texas, to the development of a community in Montgomery County near Houston, Touchstone’s growth trajectory is characterized by proactive investments in infrastructure and service diversification.”

Radical transformation

Transitioning to the broader implications of Touchstone’s endeavors, Campbell emphasized the transformative potential inherent in navigating regulatory challenges and market dynamics. According to Campbell, Touchstone doesn’t merely perceive industry shifts as insurmountable hurdles; instead, it adopts a proactive stance, viewing each challenge as an opportunity for innovation and leadership. By embracing this mindset, Touchstone has been able to weather the storms of change and emerge stronger and more resilient, setting new standards for excellence in post-acute healthcare.

Campbell speaks to the vital role of partnerships, stating, “Our partners are in this with us and help us determine solutions.” Touchstone’s key allies are Aegis Therapies and Carvajal Pharmacy, forming a crucial ecosystem contributing to its success.

Through collaborative endeavors and shared expertise, Touchstone harnesses its partners’ collective wisdom to address intricate challenges and devise inventive solutions, ultimately enhancing patient outcomes and streamlining operational efficiency. As the healthcare sector undergoes rapid evolution, Touchstone remains steadfast in its dedication to driving impactful change and positively influencing the lives of patients, residents, and caregivers.

Grounded in its foundational values of prioritizing people, refining processes, and harnessing technology, Touchstone navigates the shifting healthcare landscape with agility and foresight. As Campbell articulates, this holistic approach, rooted in the pillars of people, processes, and technology, sets Touchstone apart from its peers and guides it toward sustained success and advancement.

By maintaining a steadfast focus on these core principles, Touchstone adapts to industry changes and leads the charge in shaping its future trajectory. This commitment to continuous improvement, coupled with a focus on enhancing patient care and operational efficiency, solidifies Touchstone’s position as a trailblazer in post-acute healthcare, paving the way for continued growth and impact in the years to come.

AT A GLANCE

Touchstone Communities

What:  This article delves into Touchstone Communities’ pioneering efforts in reshaping post-acute healthcare through innovative strategies and technological advancements.

Where: Headquarters in San Antonio, Texas

Website: https://www.touchstone-communities.com/

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