PDPM & Respiratory Therapy: It’s All About the Long Term

Gregory Pino
1 min readJan 27, 2020

DynamicRT was built to help our customers increase their respiratory utilization and maintain it over the long term. In my last post I wrote, “Increasing utilization takes time and above all else requires nursing engagement — without which no program can be successful.”

When faced with the challenge of low nursing engagement, a facility has multiple factors to consider. In my view, they need to start by bringing together the entire clinical team to set expectations and establish uniformity in the conditions that qualify for respiratory therapy.

Today, most SNFs only consider patients as candidates when they are admitted with pre-existing orders for nebulizer treatments. This trend has historically led to high readmission rates among patients with respiratory conditions. Under PDPM, it is also causing SNFs to miss out on qualifying patients for Special Care High.

An effective respiratory program needs to include a system of accountability that encourages all patients to be assessed for respiratory needs upon admission and throughout their stay. This is a big adjustment for nursing and will require them to adopt some practices from their PT and OT counterparts.

Be patient with your team as you assess outcomes. We are still in the early stages of PDPM and have seen every facility advance at a different pace. As I tell my team every day, it’s all about the long term.