Assist at House launches care coordination service

Chicago-based personal home care company, Help at Home, last week announced a new segment of its business that will focus on care coordination.

Help at Home Care Coordination will seek to transform the delivery of personal care at home, improve access to care, and improve the quality of outcomes and customer satisfaction for older seniors.

To that end, the new model will combine caregiver observations with a network of providers and community resources to create a holistic experience for the patient, the company says.

As one of the largest home care providers in the country, Help at Home believes it has a responsibility – and the skills – to do more than just come into its customers’ homes and support them in their daily lives.

That was the initial motivation behind a pilot project that started about a year ago, Julie McCarter, president of the Home Help Care Coordination, told Home Health Care News.

“We started in a few specific regions in Illinois, Indiana and Pennsylvania and enrolled a few clients in this pilot program to get a better sense of their broader healthcare needs,” McCarter said. “Which — as you can imagine — confirmed our thesis that they have complex and diverse unmet needs across a spectrum of physical, behavioral, and environmental needs.”

One of the goals of the pilot project was to help clients live independently and with dignity at home for longer periods of time.

Another goal was to create a path of coordination for caregivers to feel they have a greater impact on the patients they serve.

“Happiness is such a simple word, yet it’s important because happiness in our field leads to employment,” McCarter said. “It creates longer tenure for our nurses and longer tenure with our customers. It is very important to us that our customers can stay healthy and stay at home.”

Help at Home’s 50,000 caregivers spend an average of about 20 hours a week at clients’ homes. During this time, noticing changes in the condition is a caregiver’s primary responsibility, McCarter said.

“We have the ability to capture observations that our caregivers can make about physical issues and behavioral issues in a really simple and digital way,” McCarter said. “These simple observations feed into our clinical platform and generate alerts for our broader clinical care coordination team. This is where the holistic approach can really come into play for m,e.”

The new care coordination model will be available to Medicaid, Medicare and Dual Eligible Help at Home customer groups nationwide.

It’s an exciting time for a launch like this, McCarter said, given that in-home personal care is increasingly recognized as a must-have service within the dual eligible market and with Medicare Advantage plans.

“For me, this is an opportunity to take this foundation of home care services and innovate through simple, digital, weekly collection of observations and activation of a broader healthcare system around this client,” McCarter said. “Then when I reach out to those stakeholders and potential partners, they make value-based agreements. This is a space that matters.”

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