As care continues to be delivered amid and beyond COVID-19, the regulations and requirements surrounding that care are in constant flux. For home care providers, it is vital to maintain the agility and adaptability that have long been trademarks of the industry during these tumultuous times.
To support home care providers as the industry terrain shifts and reshapes, Netsmart and the National Association for Home Care and Hospice hosted the joint webinar ‘Forecast for a Post-Covid-19 World with NAHC President Bill Dombi.’
Dombi shared invaluable takeaways for industry members, with particular emphasis on his positive predictions for home care in 2021. “They don’t call me Mr. Optimism,” Dombi noted. “But I absolutely see a silver lining in this horrible situation.”
Unpacking COVID-19 relief legislation: Three key pieces of legislation were offered not only to stimulate the economy, but also to protect the future of healthcare (CARES Act, Family First Coronavirus Relief Act, Stimulus 3.5).
Exploring 1135 home health waivers: As care delivery regulations are relaxed during COVID-19, many waivers, particularly those with an emphasis on telehealth, have potential to persist in the future, benefiting care deliverers and patients alike.
Highlighting home health agencies as frontline players: As concern surrounding infection mounts amid COVID-19, home health agencies are primed to display their versatility. With the advent of telehealth, earlier integration of care in the home is now a reality for pre-acute and acute patients, not just post-acute.
Harnessing the power of telehealth: Telehealth has faced adoption issues for years due to antiquated payment models. As restrictions are removed or reduced to deliver virtual care amid COVID-19, telehealth is proving its value as a viable means of care delivery for today and tomorrow.
Short-term impact of COVID-19:
- Regulatory and payer flexibilities
- Financial stability risks
- Workforce safety/risk
- New competitors outside of home care industry
Long-term impact of COVID-19:
- Improved home care value perception
- Embrace of technology advancements
- Better pandemic planning
As we plan for care in a post-COVID-19 world, it is vital to remember the lessons learned during this crisis. For home care providers, that means recalling your adaptability and ingenuity, your ability to deliver unparalleled care in times of pandemic. While it may seem impossible to see beyond the encompassing shadow of COVID-19, Dombi’s forecast reminds us that there are brighter days ahead, that there is a tomorrow to start planning for today.