Recently Completed Projects

Recently Completed Projects:

Dementia Capable Tennessee

Partner: Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability (TCAD)

Funding Source: Administration For Community Living Alzheimer's Disease Program Initiative
Project Role: Program Evaluation Sub-Contract

Description: The Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability (TCAD), in partnership with the state’s Area Agencies on Aging and Disability, Vanderbilt University Medical Center for Quality Aging, and other stakeholders will expand and implement a dementia-capable system across the State. The goal of the project is to promote the development and expansion of a dementia-capable home and community-based service (HCBS) system in Tennessee. The objectives are: 1) expand and sustain a dementia-capable HCBS system that includes Single Entry Point and streamlined access for people with Alzheimer's disease and related dementias (ADRD) and their caregivers statewide in Tennessee; 2) Ensure access to a comprehensive, sustainable set of quality services/interventions that are dementia-capable and provide innovative services to the population with dementia and their caregivers; 3) Implement an in-home music-therapy based intervention for at least 180 individuals in home and community based settings. 


Abe's Garden: Assessment and Quality Improvement Protocols
Principal Investigator: Sandra F. Simmons, PhD
Funding Source: Care Foundation of America, Inc.

Description: Through support from the Care Foundation of America, the Vanderbilt Center for Quality Aging is collaborating with Abes Garden to establish standardized resident assessment and staff training protocols and corresponding databases to guide innovative dementia care practices. Activities include training key personnel and providing on-going consultation related to resident assessment and quality improvement efforts.

Related Media: Abe's Garden

Feeding Assistance Care in Assistant Living- JAMDA Author Video March 2018

Related Publications:

Trained Feeding Assistant Webinar Series
Principal Investigator: Sandra F. Simmons, PhD
Funding Source: West End Home Foundation
Collaborators: QSource (part of the atom Alliance quality improvement collaborative)
The Mission of the West End Home Foundation is to improve the quality of life of seniors through support of non-profit organizations that provide advocacy, food, housing, health, and transportation services to seniors.​
Description: This project enrolled nursing homes throughout the state in a web-based program to train non-nursing personnel to assist with daily feeding.  Training curriculum is consistent with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) regulation Requirements for Paid Feeding Assistants in Long Term Care Facilities (CMS C.F.R. 483.16), which allows facilities to hire single task workers and/or cross-train existing, non-nursing personnel  to help with daily feeding assistance care during and/or between meals. The webinars were led by experts in gerontology, nursing, social work and nutrition within the Vanderbilt University Medical Center. For more information or to view the webinars visit: Feeding Assistant Training Module 


Critical Analysis of the Evidence for Patient Safety Practices in Nursing Home Settings
Principal Investigator: Melissa McPheeters
Content Experts: John F Schnelle, PhD & Sandra F Simmons, PhD
Funding Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)
Website: AHRQ Effective Health Care Program
Final Report: Resident Saftety Practices in Nursing Home Settings


Reducing Antipsychotic Drug Use in Skilled Nursing Facilities through a Web-Based Staff Training Intervention
Principal Investigator: Sandra F. Simmons, PhD
Funding Source: Nursing Home Civil Monetary Penalty Quality Improvement (CMQPI) Program Implementation
Description: This six part webinar series presented by Vanderbilt Center for Quality Aging in collaboration with Q-Source assisted long term care facilities in reducing their use of antipsychotic drugs. Long term care and skilled nursing facilities interested in viewing the webinars and related material should see the Antipsychotic Medication Reduction Training Module


Reducing Hospitalizations in Medicare Beneficiaries: A Collaboration between Acute and Post-Acute Care
Principal Investigator: John F. Schnelle, PhD
Funding Source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)
Description: This funded study combines two innovative interventions to address the frequent and often unnecessary hospital readmissions of Medicare and Medicaid patients from post-acute care (PAC) in skilled nursing facilities (SNFs). The two interventions, INTERACT (Interventions to Reduce Acute Care Transfers), and IMPACT (Improved Post-Acute Care Transitions) are evidence-based and generalizable to the majority of hospital and PAC settings, consistent with the intent of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). If effective, the combined intervention will result in substantial reductions in costs while also improving care quality and patient satisfaction.

Related Media:

Click here for an interview with Dr. Schnelle about reducing readmission rates at Vanderbilt.

** The contents of this video are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the offical views of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or any of its agencies.