‘MDS’ or ‘Minimum Data Set’ coordinators are healthcare professionals that are in charge of providing the best options for patients in terms of care delivery in facilities that are accredited or offer Medicaid and Medicare services. Under the MDS process, coordinators are tasked to ensure that patient servicing is well documented especially during the assessment phase. All details of the said documentation will be forwarded by MDS coordinators to the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The patient assessment details will also be used to formulate the best treatment plans and procedures.
MDS coordinators also work hand-in-hand with doctors, residents, and healthcare providers, and caretakers. In the case of patient assessments, for example, information is gathered from the patient’s family and the caregivers themselves. Details including health-related information, patient attitude and behavior are all documented to ensure that the best personalized medical care is given to patients. MDS coordinators basically act to become the guardians of quality care and service at the start, duration, and ending of the whole treatment process. They are tasked with implementing whatever is best for the patients, and they are also responsible for monitoring if, indeed, the best care is given by all members of the medical team including doctors, nurses, therapists, and caregivers. Part of the MDS coordinator’s responsibility is to check if the patient is receiving his/her maximum Medicare or Medicaid benefits.
Most MDS coordinators are nurses by profession. Most hospitals and large healthcare facilities require that MDS coordinators to have completed at least an associate’s degree in nursing. There are also institutions that require one to two years of clinical nursing experience while some only require some amount of prior administrative training. Nurse practitioners who wish to become MDS coordinators also need to secure a license in the state they wish to practice. Certifications from MDS coordinator programs are also provided by the American Association of Nurse Assessment Coordinators.