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New Funding for Three Ground-Breaking Home Health Studies Announced by AHHQI

September 6, 2018

The research projects range in topic from policy to clinical innovation to caring for patients with dementia in the home

WASHINGTON – Today, the Alliance for Home Health Quality and Innovation (AHHQI) is proud to announce the awardees for its 2018 home health research grant funding cycle to researchers from Columbia University School of Nursing and the RAND Corporation, Rutgers University and the VNA Health Group, and the Hospital at the University of Pennsylvania. Projects tackle pivotal areas of home health research including a changing policy environment, caring for patients with dementia in the home, and a hospital-to-home intervention for at-risk patients.

“We’re thrilled to be able to provide funding for these critical research endeavors,” said Donald Stelly, Chairman of the Alliance’s Board of Directors. “By seeding the money to pilot a number of different projects, the Alliance is helping to drive the future of home health care forward through high-quality research touching on a number of vital areas of providing care in the home which will benefit patients, caregivers, providers, and the healthcare system at large.”

In December of 2017, the Alliance opened a public request for proposals focused on home health care research funding in one or more of the following areas: payment and delivery reform, patient and person-centered care, technology, home health workforce, and clinical innovation. Following a tremendous response, the Alliance’s steering committees, led by the Executive Committee, Board of Directors, and the Research Work Group, picked the three projects for their excellence in improving the delivery of care at home, as well as aligning with the Alliance’s mission of demonstrating the value of home health care.

Researchers at Columbia University School of Nursing, led by Dr. Jingjing Shang, along with Dr. Patricia Stone, and their colleague at the RAND Corporation, Dr. Andrew Dick, will explore how home health agencies have responded to changes in quality and payment initiatives, specifically value-based purchasing, identifying best practices for home health agencies based on outcomes, and conduct qualitative interviews and a national survey on the Quality Assurance and Program Integrity (QAPI) program.

One effect of the new funding model is the ability to incubate and pilot new clinical research, some which may grow into larger demonstrations.

At Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Dr. Olga F. Jarrín, along with her colleague at VNA Health Group Dr. Robert Rosati, are refining and validating a method of rapidly identifying home health patients living with advanced cognitive impairment and dementia. This project will contribute to larger efforts demonstrating the value of home health care for people living with dementia and their family caregivers.

Additionally, Dr. Rebecca L. Trotta at the Hospital at the University of Pennsylvania will be piloting a program on the “Flipped Discharge” a hospital-to-home intervention for older adults at-risk of skilled nursing facility (SNF) placement. The goal of the study is implement an intervention protocol which promotes patient-centered care in the home as an alternative to institutional care as appropriate.

Each research project is expected to be completed over a 12-18 month period.

The aforementioned projects join the previously announced study by Drs. Cynthia Boyd, Bruce Leff, and Orla Sheehan at Johns Hopkins University that will utilize a series of qualitative research to design a clinical trial around challenges in communication and care coordination between home health care agencies and clinicians who certify home health care services.


The Alliance for Home Health Quality and Innovation (the Alliance) is comprised of leaders in the home health care community – including several of the largest home health care providers in the United States and the largest national trade association representing home health care providers. The mission of the Alliance is to foster research and education on the value of home health care to patients and the overall U.S. health care system. The Alliance is dedicated to improving the nation’s health care system through development of high quality and innovative solutions aimed at achieving optimal clinical outcomes. To learn more, visit