Created by the United Hospital Fund, Next Step in Care: Family Caregivers and Health Care Professionals Working Together is a multi-year, multi-dimensional campaign that is designed to change health care practice by routinely recognizing, training, and supporting family caregivers, especially at times of transitions in care. Making sure that transitions in care—moving patients from one setting to another—are safe and smooth is a critical challenge in health care today. As chronically ill patients move frequently between health care settings, their family caregivers are essential to a successful transition. Yet family caregivers are often left out of planning and are poorly prepared to take on new, complex, and demanding tasks and responsibilities.
This issue was highlighted in the recent report of the Institute of Medicine “Retooling for an Aging America: Building the Health Care Workforce,” which recognized family caregivers as indispensable members of the health care system and called for support and training to assure their ability to continue providing such vital care.
Next Step in Care takes on the challenge of changing decades-old practice by providing practical advice and easy-to-use guides for both providers and family caregivers that focus on transitions between hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, nursing homes, and home. The campaign is part of a broader movement in health care to improve quality and safety. While New York is the focus of the Fund's and this campaign's work, the impact and relevance are national.
Defining the Issue
Developing Next Step in Care
Collaboratives and Other Opportunities to Participate
United Hospital Fund Family Caregiving Chronology
Staff and Funders