Why In-Home Care Agencies Need to Rethink their Staffing Strategies

Covid-19 has disrupted the home-based care industry and ushered in an era of digital transformation. The risks of Covid-19 have forced an acceleration in the adoption of telehealth platforms and in the way that health care agencies think about staffing. The transition to a more techno-savvy business model has made it easier to match qualified, vetted workers to areas in need, schedule visitations and handle payments through digital platforms. Technology has the ability to help agencies grow and fend of the steep declines in revenue brought about by Covid-19. Staffing remains a huge issue with many areas greatly in need but struggling to attract staff. The market remains sub-optimally organized and technology promises to resolve the staffing challenges that exist.

In a piece by Home Health Care News, we are shown just how technology has impacted the home care agency market. The future belongs to the innovators and agencies need to adapt to the new normal. Providers who can adapt to the new environment will enjoy massive advantages going forward.

Staffing is a huge challenge for providers because the demand for carers is not where the supply is, creating a matching problem.

Some 37% of surveyed providers have seen a sharp fall in their revenues in 2020, according to a joint Axxess-Home Health Care News report. A third of those agencies believe that Covid-19 related staffing challenges are the primary drivers of revenue losses. This gives an indication of the scale of the problem.

Staffing challenges are not irresolvable, however: technology is ready to play a crucial roll in solving matching problems. For example, the Dallas-based SaaS firm, Axxess, who specialize in home healthcare technology, has developed a platform, CARE, which matches qualified, vetted workers from areas with surplus workers, with agencies in areas in which there is a deficit of workers. CARE is not just a matching tool, it also schedules case times and shows locations, so that interested clinicians can pick the jobs that are right for them. Finally, the platform handles payments upon completion of the job.

CARE has gained users during the crisis, and now, instead of agencies turning away clinicians they do not need, there is a way to direct them to where they can be of service. Even in situations where providers are fully-staffed, there are instances where jobs cannot be handled in-staff. CARE can help with that.

Technology like CARE can help organizations reach a wider clientele, and meet rising demands. Home Health Care News gives the example of Illinois-based Serenity Home Health, who have been able to scale up their business through the use of technology to resolve staffing problems, expanding to 20 new zip codes in just six months.

CARE has arranged over 34,000 in-home care visits and usage is only growing as staffing challenges continue to bedevil the industry and areas like senior home care continue to be in need of clinicians. Waiting for the situation to improve is fool’s gold. The matching problem in the market is huge and the market remains sub-optimally organized. Organizations need to use technology to get better results, results which can only aid their revenue growth.