In spite of the pandemic, a recent survey of 386 home health and home care professionals showed that there is a growing demand and real optimism for home-based care. The survey revealed how the industry is taking action in terms of navigating the evolution of home-based care, investing in technology to improve efficiency and care delivery, and preparing for staffing and growth challenges in 2022.
Anticipated areas of growth in 2022 for the home-based care industry are non-skilled home care services (37%) and skilled home health care (31%). Many respondents are planning to pursue new care models, such as hospital-at-home and SNF (skilled nursing facility)-at-home on top of the list.
As home-based care providers look forward to a post-pandemic future in home-based care, 38% of them anticipate growing referrals from hospitals, while 35% cited other community sources. Hence, 72% anticipate a rise in overall revenue this year.
Transition to Value-based Care
The survey showed that providers could use a confidence boost with regards to transitioning to value-based care. It was found that on a scale of 1-10, the average rate of preparedness for value-based care is 6, which is moderate.
Almost half the respondents said they do not anticipate making changes in technology platforms. However, if the need arises, improving patient outcomes and monitoring is the top catalyst for change.
Despite the anticipated growth area and the transition to value-based care, staffing remains to be a challenge, confirming the results from a related survey specifically on staffing. 80% of the participants said staffing is their greatest non-COVID-related challenge for 2022, with 57% and 32% of them concerned about recruiting and retention, respectively. In addition, staff management is the top category that respondents are ready to invest heavily in, while almost half believe they can achieve the greatest business efficiency in staffing utilization.
Leveraging Partnerships for Growth
This year’s tech and business efficiency investments by agencies are geared towards addressing the huge staffing challenge amid the new growth opportunities and the transition to value-based care. There are new roads to maneuver and providers will need all the help they can get.
For starters, a good first step that agencies can take is to partner with an outsourced clinical team to take care of compliance and documentation tasks so that in-house teams can focus on patient care and other key functions. Addressing concurrently increasing back-office tasks with the help of an outsourcing partner can make a big difference in the pursuit of business growth.
The survey was conducted from November 22, 2021 to December 20, 2021 by Home Health Care News in partnership with a home care software provider, Homecare Homebase. Download the full survey results here>