rcm glossary

Post-acute-care transfer (PACT)

Post-acute-care transfer (PACT) is the process of transferring patients from an acute care setting to a post-acute care facility for continued treatment and recovery.

Accelerate your revenue cycle

Boost patient experience and your bottom line by automating patient cost estimates, payer underpayment detection, and contract optimization in one place.

Get a Demo

What is Post-Acute-Care Transfer (PACT)?

Post-Acute-Care Transfer (PACT) refers to the process of transferring a patient from an acute care setting, such as a hospital, to a post-acute care facility, such as a skilled nursing facility (SNF), in order to continue their recovery and receive specialized care. PACT is an essential component of the healthcare revenue cycle management (RCM) process, as it involves the coordination of various aspects, including medical documentation, billing, and reimbursement.

When a patient requires ongoing care and rehabilitation after being discharged from a hospital, they may be transferred to a post-acute care facility. These facilities provide a range of services, including physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and nursing care, to help patients regain their independence and improve their overall health and well-being.

Difference between Post-Acute-Care Transfer (PACT) and Other Similar Terms

While the term "Post-Acute-Care Transfer (PACT)" is commonly used in the healthcare industry, it is important to understand the differences between PACT and other similar terms to avoid confusion. Here are some key distinctions:

1. Post-Acute Care (PAC):

Post-Acute Care (PAC) is a broader term that encompasses various types of care provided to patients after they have been discharged from an acute care setting. PAC can include care provided in settings such as SNFs, inpatient rehabilitation facilities (IRFs), long-term acute care hospitals (LTACHs), and home health agencies (HHAs). PACT specifically refers to the transfer of a patient from an acute care setting to a post-acute care facility.

2. Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF):

A Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) is a type of post-acute care facility that provides skilled nursing care and rehabilitation services to patients who require a higher level of medical care than what can be provided at home or in an assisted living facility. PACT often involves the transfer of patients to SNFs for continued care and recovery.

3. Home Health Care:

Home health care refers to healthcare services provided to patients in their own homes. Unlike PACT, which involves transferring patients to a post-acute care facility, home health care allows patients to receive medical care, therapy, and assistance with daily activities in the comfort of their own homes. Home health care is typically provided by skilled healthcare professionals, such as nurses, therapists, and home health aides.

It is important for healthcare providers and RCM professionals to understand these distinctions to ensure accurate documentation, billing, and reimbursement for post-acute care services.

Examples of Post-Acute-Care Transfer (PACT)

To illustrate the concept of Post-Acute-Care Transfer (PACT), let's consider a few examples:

1. Mr. Smith, a 70-year-old patient, undergoes a hip replacement surgery at a hospital. After the surgery, he requires rehabilitation and physical therapy to regain his mobility and independence. The hospital arranges for his transfer to a nearby skilled nursing facility (SNF) for post-acute care. This transfer from the hospital to the SNF is an example of PACT.

2. Mrs. Johnson, a 75-year-old patient, suffers a stroke and receives initial treatment at a hospital. Once her condition stabilizes, she is transferred to an inpatient rehabilitation facility (IRF) for intensive therapy and rehabilitation. The transfer from the hospital to the IRF is an example of PACT.

3. Ms. Davis, a 60-year-old patient, is diagnosed with a chronic respiratory condition and requires ongoing care and monitoring. Instead of being transferred to a post-acute care facility, she receives home health care services. In this case, PACT does not occur as the patient is not transferred to a separate facility but receives care at home.

These examples highlight the different scenarios in which PACT may be involved, depending on the specific needs of the patient and the type of post-acute care required.

In conclusion, Post-Acute-Care Transfer (PACT) is a critical aspect of healthcare revenue cycle management (RCM) that involves the transfer of patients from acute care settings to post-acute care facilities for continued care and recovery. Understanding the nuances of PACT and its distinctions from other similar terms, such as post-acute care, skilled nursing facilities, and home health care, is essential for accurate documentation, billing, and reimbursement in the healthcare industry.

Get paid in full by bringing clarity to your revenue cycle

Full Page Background