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News from the Thorne Group 

Celebrating 20 Years in 2015

The Thorne Group is celebrating its 20th Anniversary in 2015. Started in 1995 with one small contract to provide nonskilled services for Westmoreland County, The Thorne Group now provides skilled and nonskilled services in Westmoreland and Allegheny counties, with about 140 employees and almost 160,000 hours of service provided in 2014.

Consistently ranked as a top home care agency and a popular choice with local Trib Total Media readers, The Thorne Group continues to provide top quality skilled and non skilled home care throughout the region.

The Thorne Group Exceeds Compliance Requirements for all Levels of Standards in Recent Survey

In June, 2012, the Allegheny County Department of Human Services/Area Agency on Aging (ACDHS/AAA) conducted a monitoring visit at The Thorne Group for OPTIONS Personal Care/Personal Assistance Services/Home Support.

After final scoring, Home Health Services by The Thorne Group achieved scores of 100% (high level standards), 99% (medium level standards), and 100% (low level standards), exceeding compliance for all levels of standards.

We appreciate the contributions made by all of our staff. Keep up the good work!

The Thorne Group Ranks in the TOP 100 out of 7,500 Agencies

The Thorne Group was named to the Top 100 Home Health agencies in the United States and the Top 10 in Pennsylvania! Approximately 7,500 agencies were ranked.

The ranking, performed by Outcome Concept Systems, scored agencies on three categories – quality of care, quality improvement and financial performance. The data utilized comes from CMS’ Home Health Compare database and cost reports submitted to CMS. Selection of top agencies by this independent organization is quite an honor. We’re very proud of our achievement, and prouder still that we have been able to attain and maintain high quality performance standards. We credit our administrator, Cheryl Dott, and our fine staff of nurses, aides and office assistants, for continuing dedication and hard work. We appreciate the contributions made by all of our staff. Keep up the good work!

Care Transition Project Participation

The Thorne Group is one of only a few selected agencies in Western PA selected by CMS (Medicare) to participate in a project aimed at reducing the 30 day rehospitalization rate within our community.

The primary goal of improved care transitions is to provide patients with the tools and support that promote knowledge and self-management of their transition as they move from one level of care to another. This project focuses on improving the communication and coordination between providers to ease the transition from hospitalization to home or to skilled care.

The Thorne Group is proud to work with local hospitals and skilled care facilities to reduce rehospitalization rates.

Caring at a Distance

 As more and more families have children and potential care givers living away from home, or working in various areas of the country, it becomes difficult to care for parents and grandparents from a long distance. The Thorne Group, Inc. can help bridge the distance and make family members aware of the best options available. Available care systems for older adults can appear confusing and fragmented to those unfamiliar with them. At The Thorne Group, our Geriatric Special Services Coordinator can help bring it all together for you. Visit our Distant Caring page to learn more.

2007 National Campaign names The Thorne Group a Premier Campaign Participant.

As one of the first home health agencies to register, The Thorne Group, Inc. has been granted Premier status in the 2007 Home Health Quality Improvement National Campaign.

The goal of the campaign is to help home care patients remain comfortably at home, resulting in fewer avoidable hospitalizations. By participating, The Thorne Group pledges to work toward reducing the number of hospitalizations while improving clinical outcomes and patient satisfaction.

The campaign offers each participating agency a monthly Best Practice Investigation Package. These packages highlight best practice interventions that assist in reducing avoidable acute care hospitalization.

Agencies also receive monthly data benchmarking reports to assist in tracking progress. To learn more, visit www.homehealthquality.org.

The Thorne Group, Inc. is committed to ensuring that home health patients receive the right care in a caring and concerned atmosphere, every time.

Support for the Community

Agency owners Bill and Becky Thorne are both active in many community organizations, which they support with contributions of both time and dollars. “Westmoreland County is a great community, with good people and lots of culture,” Becky says. “We are fortunate to live and work in Youngwood and its surrounding communities, and we believe in giving back to the community that we enjoy so much.” Becky supports the efforts of the Women’s Leadership Council, a philanthropic organization committed to bringing about positive community change. The Council’s initial project is to fund Faith in Action, a local organization which serves the elderly with escort, respite and other services which are free to the recipient.

Becky believes that it is important to assist our elderly through every available means, including volunteer organizations. The Thorne Group Nursing Scholarship The Thorne Group Nursing Scholarship was awarded for the first time in the spring of 2007. Candidates were eligible to apply for funds that substantially defrayed tuition and other expenses related to earning a registered nursing degree through Westmoreland County Community College. The Thornes are addressing the critical shortage of nurses in this way and are also exploring options for promoting the teaching of nursing, another area of demand.

Medicare Statistics Show Agency’s Excellence

According to Home Health Compare, the Medicare-maintained webpage on home health agency performance statistics, The Thorne Group consistently exceeds both state and national averages in improvement of certain patient outcomes, even though our patient population is much older than state and national averages. In addition, The Thorne Group typically surpasses the performance of other local home health agencies in many outcomes categories such as improvement in bathing, dressing, managing medications, hospital admission, etc.

Administrator Honored for Project Performance

The Thorne Group’s administrator, Cheryl Dott, was honored for her excellence in completing an outcome-based quality improvement project mandated by CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services). Cheryl was recognized in a special ceremony by Quality Insights of Pennsylvania, the Medicare Quality Improvement Organization for PA and the firm chosen by Medicare to implement the project and monitor its results, for the way in which she set up and executed a project designed to produce improvement in breathing. Quality Insights commended the agency on the “superior quality of care that you provide to your patients.”

Agency Chosen to Participate in Special Study

In addition, because of Administrator Cheryl Dott’s distinguished performance, The Thorne Group was hand-picked to participate in a collaborative for a small group of home health agencies in PA which will track improvement in the management of oral medications. As Quality Insights wrote in a letter to our agency, “In recognition of the excellent care that you provide to your patients and your commitment to continuous quality improvement, Quality Insights has selected your agency as one of 23 home health agencies across the state [out of hundreds] to participate in this project.”

Agency Owner Earns Honors

The Thorne Group’s President/CEO, Rebecca Thorne, was recently named one of Pennsylvania’s 2005 Best 50 Women in Business for professional achievement and community involvement and for “bringing new and innovative ideas and techniques to businesses that are shaping the economic future of our state”. She was honored in a ceremony in Harrisburg.

Ms. Thorne was also a finalist for 2006 Entrepreneur of the Year for “demonstrating the entrepreneurial spirit of ingenuity, fortitude and perseverance.”

In addition, she was named one of the Top 100 People in the Region for both 2005 and 2006. In addition, Ms. Thorne recently received the 2007 Woman of Distinction Award from the Keystone Tall Tree Girl Scout Council. The award honors women who are recognized as role models for young women. She was specifically recognized for her philanthropy, promotion of the community, and entrepreneurial spirit.

 

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The Thorne Group

Registered and Approved by the Department of Public Welfare as a Training Institution for Personal Care Home Administrators.

Agency Owner Earns Honors

Rebecca Thorne, winner of the 2007 Woman of Distinction Award, pictured with her husband Bill. Read about this and other honors for Becky Thorne in our Honors Article below.

2007 Premier Campaign Participant

"The Home Health Quality Improvement (HHQI) National Campaign 2007 seeks to unite the home care community under the shared vision of reducing avoidable hospitalizations to improve patient quality of care." -- HHQI National Campaign

NEWS BRIEFS

Telehealth Monitoring

Telehealth monitoring has made great strides in helping improve care for at-home patients suffering from chronic diseases such as heart failure, diabetes, COPD, and more. Remote monitors allow the collection and review of patient data for the purpose of health supervision and management. It all takes place through an interactive monitor placed in the patient’s home and connected to a computer in the agency office. Please visit our Homecare Technologies page to learn more.

The Thorne Group offers Skilled Nursing

Skilled nursing care is ordered for patients upon discharge from a hospital. Patients unable to easily leave home to receive treatment for a medical condition at a doctor's office or hospital are candidates for skilled nursing, which includes:

  • Wound care.
  • Ostomy care.
  • Medication management.
  • Medication review.
  • Patient education.
  • Home safety instructions.
  • Feeding tube care.

And more. Visit our Skilled Nursing page to learn more.

Flu Shots

The agency offers flu shots to 500+ seniors every year and plans to do so again this year.

Community Education

Physical Disabilities

The agency was recently authorized to provide services under the Community Services for Persons with Physical Disabilities Program which encompasses the OBRA, Independence and CommCare Waivers operated by PA’s Department of Public Welfare.

Thorne Group Services

The Thorne Group offers home health care, skilled nursing, therapy, private duty nursing, heath monitoring, and geriatric special services in many cities and towns in Westmoreland County, Allegheny County, and throughout Southwestern PA.

  • Greensburg
  • Murrysville
  • Monroeville
  • Pittsburgh

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