What do non-medical home care businesses need to know?
Those of us in the non-medical home care industry know the value of our services to seniors. We provide vital services that allow seniors to age in place, giving them better nutrition, safety, transportation and social interactions. While we’re not medical care, our services contribute to better overall health and quality of life.
So, changes to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services rules that went into effect Jan. 1, 2019, allowing coverage for home care through some Medicare Advantage supplemental plans, help answer a need that we understood long ago. While many seniors need home care, too many could not afford it. This change puts quality home care within the reach of more seniors.
A Slow Start
While the rules went into effect at the start of 2019, it will probably take until 2020 for the industry to show any substantial change. This is partly due to insurers not yet offering the new benefits, holding off until they have a better sense of pricing and the state of the market.
It is best to start planning to incorporate Medicare benefits into your business model or join a proactive home care franchise like FirstLight now so you will be ready when insurers start rolling out coverage. A well-prepared home care service will likely see a spike in clients when this happens. Getting prepared means onboarding and training new staff, as well as starting the process of becoming credentialed to receive Medicare payments.
As the CMS rule change takes effect, be warned that the change does not automatically apply to all home care businesses. As with all government processes, there are regulations to follow.
To become qualified to receive payments from Medicare Advantage supplemental plans, home care providers will need to become property credentialed to do so, and the process is not easy. The process represents a major investment of time and money to complete, so franchises and larger home care businesses will be able to take these payments sooner.
Consider a Franchise
If you are thinking about opening your own home care business in light of the CMS rule change, you would be wise to consider a franchise opportunity. At FirstLight, we are already positioning our franchisees to accept Medicare Advantage supplemental plan payments. When you open your FirstLight business, you will already have the tools and staff in place to make the most of anticipated demand.
Contact us today to find out more about our growing industry and our commitment to caring for seniors.