A Quick Overview of A Home Healthcare Business
Your typical day will vary greatly, depending on the type of business you start.
If you pursue a medical based, home health care service, then you may sit with elderly or ailing patients and give them their medications.
There may also be light duty cleaning and cooking involved. You may need to help your patients with hygiene needs. Non-medical healthcare professionals perform the similar tasks; however, they do not give patients medications.
There are some decisions that you will need to make before starting. First, decide whether to start a medical or non-medical based business. A medical based business can charge more for their services. However, you must have medical training such as a CNA (certified nursing assistant).
Also, think about whether to start a franchise or open your own independent agency. Franchises, such as Visiting Angels®, give you name recognition and provide a proven business model, but require you to pay franchise fees.
Any employees that you hire, need to have thorough background checks. Also, contact private insurance companies to see how you can start accepting their insurance.
Consider obtaining the additional license and certification needed to accept Medicare and Medicaid clients. To do this, apply through the State Medicare agency and get a surety bond of $50,000 from an approved surety company.
A state representative will inspect your agency to make sure it meets all of the required health and safety standards. You are required to have at least seven clients and three months of operating funds and steady revenue.
Employee & Job Consideration During The Start-up Phase Or In the Future:
- Licensed care professionals or trained staff
- Common Staff Positions Needed To Run Some Businesses
- Previous nursing or nursing assistance is helpful but not required
- Ability to lift a minimum of 50 pounds easily
- Patience with people (including elderly and ailing)
- Warm persona
- Basic medical background
- Flexibility in the hours you need to care for your client
- Basic understanding of emergency medical treatments and CPR
- Be able to assist with mobility
- Medications Administration (possibly)
- Take blood pressure
- Take care of bodily needs of a person
- Make meals
- Help to help the home orderly and hygienic
- Transport people to shopping, church, etc.
- List of Common Business Skills
Equipment, Supplies, & Services During Start-up OR In The Future:
- A uniform-type of attire is professional but not necessary
- Variety of different types of books that can be read to patients
- Diagnostics equipment
- Cleaning supplies (if requested to clean as well)
- List of Essential office Equipment
Monthly Expenses to Consider:
Approximate Daily Hours Needed:
General Hours of Operation: As a home health giver, your hours will vary greatly. This is not a 9-5 job. Some care professionals live in with their patients.
Approximate Minimum Startup Cost:
The investment required to start is relatively low. If you are going to be caring for people in their own homes, you eliminate the need for an office and for a lot of equipment. The patients will have the necessary medical equipment in their homes already.
Special Requirements and Considerations:
- Perform all necessary criminal and background investigations for each professional that is hired. The DataBase Records website performs instant nationwide criminal searches.
- Accept private medical insurance by making sure your agency meets individual insurer requirements. You can get this information by contacting them directly and obtaining a list of those requirements.
- Get the necessary certifications.
Pros and Cons:
- You perform a valuable service to the community
- There is a good market for your services
- Minimal startup costs
- Room for expansion
- Might have long hours
- Patients may take out frustration over not being able to care for themselves on you
- The family might have expectations of you that go beyond your job duties
- Some work can be physically demanding
Type of Customers You Need to Attract:
Typical customers that need home care, include the elderly, the disabled, and those recuperating from major surgeries and injuries.
According to data from Medicaid, in 2008 Medicaid paid an average of $4938 USD per patient, per month. The average number of visits per patient was 35 per month.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual wage for managers in this industry, for May 2007 was $83,030.