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Keeping Pace: Three Steps Growing Home Healthcare Agencies are Taking to Protect Themselves

Monday, October 30, 2017
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By Tom Kallai

It’s no secret that Home Healthcare is one of the fastest growing industries today. It is not uncommon to see an agency rapidly increase not only their client base but also their workforce. With rapid growth comes rapid change.

This applies not only to the day-to-day business operations of a home healthcare agency but their risk profile as well.  Gaps in coverage, inadequate hiring practices, and poor contract management are just some of the unaddressed risks facing a growing home healthcare agency. So how do these agencies gain a better understanding of their new exposures and the gaps in their risk management programs? Below are the three steps that the most successful agencies are taking to properly mitigate their changing risk.

  1. Inventory Your Risk

    A quickly growing agency cannot begin to manage their risk until they know what new risks and exposures they are facing. A proactive strategy and repeatable process of inventorying risk are integral to the sustainability of a growing home healthcare agency.  Understanding the risks that are not only right in front of them, but also on the horizon could mean the difference between successfully managed exposure, and closing the agency doors forever. 

Home Healthcare exposures uncovered by Risk Inventory Process include:

  • Employee Safety
  • Turnover
  • Inadequate hiring and vetting processes
  • Liability exposures with integration of employee benefits
  • Certificate of Insurance management
  1. Prioritize Your Risk

    Once a risk profile is built, a strategy must be formed to mitigate the home healthcare agency’s exposures. There will never be enough time, resources, or home healthcare insurance to successfully mitigate ALL an agency’s risk. Therefore, it is important to allocate resources toward the threats that are most likely to happen and can have the most severe impact on the agency. Prioritizing risk in this way allows the agency to begin to control their most frequent and impactful exposures, and serves as the foundation for the risk management strategy moving forward.

  1. Outsource Your Risk Management

    When companies experience the rapid growth, it can be a chaotic time. Often, administration staff will begin to double or triple their responsibilities as the agency doubles or triples in size.   When it comes to priorities, risk management usually resides low on the list, not out of triviality, but out of necessity, yielding to the day to day operation of the agency.  For that reason, agencies that are seeing the most success in their risk management are the ones that are doing the least. They are outsourcing it to the experts. By outsourcing risk management to partners such as the Horton Group, the risk is inventoried, prioritized, and mitigated by insurance and risk specialists who understand the home healthcare space and the exposures that come along with it.  While the agency’s outsourced partner executes the risk management program, the staff is free to focus on the growth of the agency, maximizing efficiency. 

Home healthcare continues to grow, and the agencies whose risk management program keeps pace will emerge as industry leaders in the space.  Inventorying risk, prioritizing risk, and working with the experts have consistently resulted in reduced workloads for administrative staff and reduced anxiety for C-level leadership. Additionally, adherence to these three steps has yielded favorable insurance premiums at renewal.

For more information contact the Horton Group Health & Human Service Practice at 708-845-3310.

Material posted on this website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a legal opinion or medical advice. Contact your legal representative or medical professional for information specific to your legal or medical needs.

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