PMH swing bed program offers extended hospital care

Frost, W.Va. – Allegheny Mountain Radio special projects manager Gibbs Kinderman interviewed Pocahontas Memorial Hospital nurse Edwina Garber about the hospital’s swing bed program on August 14. The transcript follows.

Kinderman: “Edwina Garber is a nurse/case manager at Pocahontas Memorial Hospital. She’s in charge of something called the swing bed program. Edwina, what’s a swing bed?”

Garber: “Swing bed is a skilled nursing program that you can come to after any major illness or surgery and be rehabilitated. We have physical therapy, occupational therapy, respiratory therapy and, of course, our nurses that would handle any type of IV, antibiotics or wound care.”

Kinderman: “So, it’s kind of like a skilled nursing home inside a hospital?”

Garber: “Yes, it is.”

Kinderman: “How does this get paid for? Is it – does Medicare cover it?”

Garber: “Medicare pays for the first 20 days at 100-percent. Starting on the twenty-first day, there is a co-pay and we verify if you have a secondary insurance. We do verify to see if they will cover that co-pay.”

Kinderman: “So, I know you take patients coming in from hospitals in other areas, that people have been – be it hospitalized in Roanoke or Charleston or Low Moor or whatever. But, do you also sometimes have people who have been in PMH for their inpatient care transferred to the swing bed program within the same hospital?”

Garber: “Yes, we do. People can be admitted with pneumonia or congestive heart failure and they are so ill and get weak and debilitated that they can then transfer over to the skilled program, as long as they meet the criteria. We have to have a doctor’s referral. They have to meet the criteria and, of course, most of the insurances we do have to have approval.”

Kinderman: “So, basically, if you come to the end of what the insurance or Medicare will pay for, as a regular inpatient hospital stay, then the swing bed is an option to having to go home or going to the nursing home.”

Garber: “Exactly. The nursing home does offer a skilled rehab program. They require a pass in order to get into their facility. That’s a document that has to go through WVMI in Charleston and be approved and we do not require a pass.”

Kinderman: “So, Edwina, if people are interested in this option, how do they contact you?”

Garber: “All they have to do is call Pocahontas Memorial Hospital at 304-799-7400, extension 1081.”

Kinderman: “Tell us once again.”

Garber: “304-799-7400, extension 1081.”

Kinderman: “Edwina Garber, of Pocahontas Memorial Hospital. And, for old time Pocahontas County folks, she’s Sam Cassell’s daughter, from Cass. For Mountain Radio News and, this is Gibbs Kinderman.”

Story By

Heather Niday

Heather is our Program Director and Traffic Manager. She started with Allegheny Mountain Radio as a volunteer deejay. She then joined the AMR staff in February of 2007. Heather grew up in the Richmond, Virginia, area and now lives in Arbovale, West Virginia with her husband Chuck. Heather is a wonderful flute player, and choir director for Arbovale UMC. You can hear Heather along with Chuck on Tuesday nights from 6 to 8pm as they host two hours of jazz on Something Different.

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