Don’t work overtime to manage overtime

June 23, 2017| Blog, Homecare

Since the Fair Labor Standards Act went into effect in 2015, granting home care workers the right to overtime compensation, overtime management has become a significant challenge facing home care providers. Not only is it difficult for small agencies to afford paying employees overtime, but the manual process of tracking aide hours and calculating overtime pay also costs agencies a significant amount of administrative time.

So, how can agencies effectively manage overtime and even out aide workloads, so one caregiver isn’t underused while another is overscheduled? Read More

Successful home care agencies need tools that drive streamlined growth

June 9, 2017| Blog, EVV Bill, HR Bill 2446, Health Care, Homecare, Technology

When home care agencies begin to grow and expand, many variables – from confusing technology compliance updates to sky-high administrative expenses – often hinder even the best intentions. But getting lost in the details – such as to how best schedule your caregivers based on a client’s specific gender or language preferences – only holds you back from growing intelligently.

Home care agencies are becoming an important facet of society, especially as baby boomers, now a sizable 13 percent of the U.S. population, are already requiring high quality, independent, patient-centered home care, and that demand will grow in coming years. If you are a home care agency ready to grow in size to keep up with future demand, a workflow by exception software platform that dramatically increases your agency’s efficiency and scale is critical.

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Simplifying scheduling with integrated dashboards

June 2, 2017| Blog, Health Care, Managed care, Provider, Technology

A quality employee base is important in every industry, but in home care, it’s an absolute necessity. Providers invest a lot of time into managing their caregivers, from ensuring they have the right certifications to maximizing each aide’s schedule. Provider agencies that don’t manage their caregivers efficiently and effectively could lose out on revenue and billing opportunities, impacting their bottom line in the long run.

Caregiver burnout is a significant industry problem, with 40-60 percent turnover rates in home care agencies leading to an estimated $5 billion in turnover costs each year. Aides who feel overworked or who are paired with clients who are ill-suited to them – and therefore difficult to manage – may be more likely to leave an agency. Agencies need to leverage the available technology and processes to address these challenges and retain quality talent. Read More

Why value is the hottest word in home care

May 23, 2017| Blog, Homecare, Managed care, Provider

Value-based care is a major area of focus in the health care community and home care is no exception. Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) are under tremendous pressure to deliver value – improving results while controlling costs – and these efforts will inevitably put similar pressure on providers.

As a result, MCOs will be assessing prospective network providers with a keen focus on their ability to deliver value. Home care providers that can demonstrate value will have a substantial advantage in this new landscape as payers look to build out a network that can provide the most efficient and effective care. Providers that can do this will benefit from increased referrals and an opportunity to substantially grow their agency.

While value is a word that is being thrown around by almost everyone in the industry, what does it mean for a home care provider to demonstrate value? The simplest way to think about this is to put yourself in the payer’s shoes: If you are looking for home care agencies that you can trust, what do you want to see?

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What you missed at the PHA Annual Conference

May 9, 2017| Blog, Events and Tradeshows, Pennsylvania, Provider

Community HealthChoices is bringing managed care to the Pennsylvania home care market, and last week’s Pennsylvania Home Care Association (PHA) Annual Conference was a critical event for home care agencies to learn more about what these changes mean.

As a key player at the event, our HHAeXchange team had dozens of conversations with home care providers to understand their concerns and help educate them on critical actions to ensure they are ready for a managed care ecosystem. Here is what our team heard about and discussed at the show:

  • Greg Strobel, president: “In looking at the Pennsylvania market, there is no question that there is opportunity for growth, and many agencies we spoke with at the show are using agency management systems that won’t support agencies that expand above the 100 census threshold. As the CHC deadline approaches, it’s imperative that agencies consider a platform that will account for this growth.” Read More

Upcoming webinar: Are you 21st Century CURES Act compliant?

April 25, 2017| Blog, EVV Bill, HR Bill 2446, Payer

The 21st Century CURES Act enforces the use of electronic visit verification (EVV) to combat fraud, waste and abuse in home care, but that’s not all. The benefits can go well beyond simply tracking arrivals and departures and include financial, operational and clinical benefits organizations may want to consider.

There are only a few seats left for our webinar on Thursday titled “EVV is Mandatory: A Roadmap for Optimizing your Strategies.” During this free webinar, you’ll get a detailed look at everything Medicaid payers and State Medicaid organizations need to know about the mandate and how to optimize the active management of home care. The discussion will include:

  • An overview of the CURES Act, including the funding match from the federal government
  • The strategic position of EVV and what it enables
  • Specific concepts for optimizing EVV implementations
  • A pros and cons discussion of different models that have been pursued
  • HHAeXchange’s recommended Golden Rules for EVV strategy
  • What you can do to influence model adoption

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Reduce aide turnover with three easy moves

April 20, 2017| Blog, Provider

In late 2016, the New York Times reported that home care aides represented one of the fastest-growing jobs in America, with more than 1.4 million people employed in the role. The same report indicated that turnover in the space hovers between 40 and 60 percent annually.

As an agency owner, you know that one of the most challenging aspects of your job is finding, maintaining and managing home care aides. And we’re not here to tell you that we can solve your problem with the snap of our fingers, but we do have three recommendations that can help you increase both retention and satisfaction rates for your aides.

  1. Make sure they get paid: Understandably, home care aides want to be compensated for the important work they do. Many providers today rely on manual schedules and excel sheets that can lead to calculation errors and missed hours worked. By investing in a central platform, you can create schedules and track hours automatically, reducing errors and ensuring accurate payment. You’ll also avoid under- or overbooking an aide and cut your administrative costs.

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Why Payers should go beyond traditional EVV in Florida

March 24, 2017| Blog, Health Care, Homecare, Payer, Technology

Late last year, Congress passed the 21st Century CURES Act which, among other things, requires that all fifty states must choose a form of electronic visit verification (EVV) to verify in-home visits for both home care and personal care appointments. While EVV systems work to combat fraud and abuse to ensure members are receiving proper care and caregivers are held accountability, it is only the first step in a truly effective home care program.

While EVV is an effective monitoring tool for tracking arrivals and departures – thereby reducing false claims of time spent with a member – it only goes so far. Capturing and tracking data from an EVV solution won’t help Medicaid payers reduce readmissions and monitor other quality measures unless they actively manage the process and consider a collaborative and transparent home care platform. Read More

New survey data reveals State of Home Care surprises

February 28, 2017| Blog, Homecare, Survey

The home care industry is complex. The American healthcare system is struggling to serve an aging population, a challenge that home care can help address. But with just five percent (150.4 million USD) of the 3 trillion USD national healthcare budget, home care players are struggling to keep up, let alone innovate.

We recently surveyed 250 individuals who were directly involved in the home care process, either through their own experience or a loved one’s. Our questions sought to identify the benefits and challenges associated with home care, and reveal the trajectory of the industry moving forward.

The survey was divided into three sections to better identify trends within the whole of the industry: the shifting home care paradigm, the home care experience and the future of home care. Our results revealed some surprising trends; a lack of communication among payers and providers; instances of fraud, waste and abuse; and an increasing role of technology in the industry.

Specifically, we found that: Read More