COVID-19 Disrupted the World Creating a New Normal for Home Care – Are you Ready for Home Care’s Growth Opportunity?
As a result of COVID-19, Homecare providers should be ready for the following impact:
-Elderly people are safer at home, and this will create an increased market demand for homecare providers.
-Caregiver demand will increase, and caregivers will be looking for agencies which can provide them tools and resources to make their lives easier.
-Growth and complexities from a growing market will require modern software solutions.
This will be the new normal. The time to reform, adapt, and prepare is now…
Safer at Home: Simply put, this pandemic has proven that the safest place for us to be is at home. As for the foreseeable future, our homes are going to be a place in which we all spend more time. Bringing people in close proximity for extended periods of time is going to be discouraged when allowed. This is especially true for those who are at the most risk, such as our seniors and individuals with special needs.
Possible New Regulations: COVID-19 outbreak will likely result in new regulations. We are already seeing movement toward regulation changes placed in and around home care, communities, assisted living facilities, and SNF. This trend will continue as we develop home care best practices post COVID-19.
Increased Demand for Care in the Home: Movement of care out of the facility and into the home is certainly nothing new, however the anticipated growth in need, as well as the overall pace of that growth is going to be ground breaking. The movement of care into the home has been occurring, albeit at a measured pace in recent years. We should expect to see accelerated movement to home care as payers and families proactively keep seniors, people with disabilities and the other vulnerable members of our society out of hospitals and institutions and in their homes. The Home Care industry is poised to see a substantial increase in demand following the COVID-19 outbreak.
New and Existing Provider Growth: Home Care providers will be tasked with meeting this demand for homecare. This will not only be a large opportunity for existing providers, but will attract new agencies, and attention to the market. Providers and Caregivers who are incumbents will have an advantage to continue providing their value to this market, but must be prepared to quickly scale.
Agency Operational Changes: Meeting this demand and need to scale up operations will be an opportunity for many agencies, but will also require many to change the way that they operate in order to meet the new needs, produce their superior value, grow safely, and remain profitable. Additionally, they will be required to meet a growing number of regulations and reporting requirements that will likely follow the market increase closely.
Need for Advance Software: In order to ensure that quality care is being provided and scale is achieved, Home Care Providers will need to turn to comprehensive modern software systems and platforms in order to sustain their businesses and keep advantages over the new competition. Legacy or manual systems will no longer be able to allow independent or franchise providers the ability to serve their clients effectively and provide the best care. Providers that have adopted complete home care software platforms will have a competitive advantage. Those trying to meet this demand while implementing a new system will find it to be more difficult. Thus, those providers who have implemented a digitized platform before the increase in demand will likely scale and grow at a faster rate than their non-digitized peers.
Increased Caregiver Demand: The increase in clients will not only have a positive potential impact to the Home Care providers, but also Caregivers. As we likely see an increase in demand for qualified Caregivers, retaining talent will be critical. In order to do this, home care providers will be required to provide tools for the Caregivers that are intuitive, modern, and allows them to have the information they need to be productive and provide quality care. This again, will require agencies to have digital solutions available to meet the needs of their growing employee base and meet those inherent complexities with scale that drives best practices in care and elevates patient/caregiver engagement and satisfaction while reducing administrative burden.Dynamic Scheduling and Remote Communication: Last, we should anticipate an increased portion of our efforts in Home Care will necessitate less physical proximity and contact with our patients/customers. This will also require better knowledge and understanding of the individuals that do come in contact with the patient/customer. This will require that providers are able to provide dynamic scheduling which include strong identification and communication tools in place. It also speaks to the importance of retaining talent mentioned previously. On the topic of communication tools, we should anticipate that remote or virtual visit methods may become more standard in some situations. As such, technology considerations will need to be evaluated for the home care provider, their caregivers, and (at least with recognition or understanding) with their patients/customers.
In summary, the near-term challenges which have been introduced through the COVID-19 pandemic will likely create opportunities for home care providers to offer their solutions to a broader audience with opportunity for growth. Home care providers need to be ready for this response by preparing to scale the great service and value they are already providing to a growing volume of caregivers and customers. Loyalty of caregivers and customers will be critical during this time. Those who are better prepared with advanced software solutions will prosper long-term. Many of the things we will prepare for today will have applicability for many years to come. Like many other substantial events, the changes that are implemented afterward to improve our conditions result in lasting behavioral changes of our society.
SMARTcare Software can provide solutions that will help you and your agency prepare for the future of homecare. SMARTcare offers an easy-to-use enterprise solution to manage, schedule, and operate everything you need for your homecare business. SMARTcare is currently offering our COVID-19 Toolset at no charge to all homecare agencies. The Toolset App includes reminders, agency notices, symptom checks, contact tracing and other important tools to help you manage your response to the pandemic. We are in this together. To find out more about SMARTcare Software, email firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know how we can help.
To find out how SmartCare™ software and support can help you manage communication with your team more effectively, please contact us at 1+ (800) 450-9104 or via email: email@example.com