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Photo: AaronP-Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

Mayo Clinic and Kaiser Permanente announced Thursday they've teamed up to scale the use of hospital care in patients' homes, starting with a shared investment in Boston-based company called Medically Home Group.

Why it matters: After seeing hospital capacity strained to the max amid the pandemic along with the simultaneous rise of telehealth, more patients could find themselves getting acute care in their own beds in the future.

State of play: Already, several hospitals around the country — including Adventist Health, ProMedica, UNC Health and Tufts Medical Center — began using Medically Home's model of care. Mayo and Kaiser also began using Medically Home amid the pandemic.

  • Medically Home sets up all the necessary tools, such as remote monitoring technology as well as an integrated care team, to monitor and offer care to patients in their homes. They estimate 30% of hospitalized patients can benefit from the model.
  • While many hospitals built field hospitals or implemented surge plans that included moving ICU patients to non-ICU areas for their care, the hospital-at-home model emerged as another option for many.

Between the lines: While the pandemic pushed many insurers to pay for hospital-at-home care and telehealth rules relaxed, it remains unclear what the future holds when it comes to the rules in a post-pandemic world.

Go deeper

Updated Aug 18, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Biden says nursing home staff must be vaccinated for federal funding

President Biden speaking from the White House on Aug. 16. Photo: Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Biden said Wednesday that nursing home and long-term care facilities must vaccinate their staff against COVID-19 to continue to receive federal Medicare and Medicaid funding in response to lagging vaccination rates and a surge of new cases from the Delta variant of the coronavirus.

Why it matters: Federal data showed that 60% of nursing home staff and around 82% of residents had been vaccinated against the virus in early August, even though they were among the first groups in the country to gain access to vaccines earlier this year.

2 hours ago - World

U.S. will give Russians written response to NATO demands, Blinken says

Blinken and Lavrov shake hands in Geneva. Photo: Russian Foreign Ministry / Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Secretary of State Antony Blinken confirmed after a meeting with his Russian counterpart on Friday that the U.S. will provide written answers to Russia's security demands next week.

Why it matters: Russia claims to be waiting for "concrete answers" to its demands that NATO rule out further expansion and roll back its presence in eastern Europe before deciding its next steps on Ukraine. But the U.S. and NATO have called those proposals "non-starters," and Friday's meeting offered no breakthroughs, so it's unclear how written answers might change the equation.

More surprises await scientists at Antarctica's "Doomsday Glacier"

Cliffs along the edge of the Thwaites Ice Shelf in West Antarctica. Photo: James Yungel/NASA

Researchers like David Holland, an atmospheric scientist at New York University, are in a race to understand the fate of a massive glacier in West Antarctica that has earned a disquieting nickname: "The Doomsday Glacier."

Why it matters: Studies show the Thwaites Glacier (its official name) could already be on an irreversible course to melt during the next several decades to centuries, freeing up enough inland ice to raise global sea levels by at least several feet.