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Medicare Cuts: The Effects on Private Duty Care

By Derek Jones on Mar 12, 2012

private duty careThe home health industry has been abuzz with talk of Medicare cuts over the past year. A proposed cut of doctor reimbursements, up to 27%, sparked major lobbying from organizations representing physicians, such as the American Medical Association. Thanks to these intense lobbying efforts, recent announcements from Congress left doctors relieved as the proposed reimbursement cuts were not implemented.

However, with a deficit looming, cuts to the Medicare budget must be made somewhere and, unfortunately, those cuts hit the home health programs under Medicare. What does this mean for private duty providers?

  1. Medicare home health providers may provide less referrals to private duty care providers.
    With fewer funds available to reimburse seniors for home healthcare provided by Medicare, some private duty agencies may see a reduction in the number of referrals coming in from Medicare providers. In many circumstances, a private duty provider using a home care software or home care system makes a great parallel care partner for seniors receiving home health services as they are able to receive assistance with both medical care and activities of daily living.
  2.  Families may begin seeking more private duty assistance.
    The good news for private duty agencies is that these cuts may not be severely detrimental to business. In fact, many times when less reimbursement funding is available from Medicare, family members take a bigger active role in seeking the care they feel a senior loved one requires. This may mean enlisting the help of a private duty agency to assist with activities of daily living. Help your agency stand out as family members seek this kind of care by using a robust home care software or home care system, like ClearCare, to track client needs and provide a secure log-in for family members to track updates on client care in your home care software or home care system.

Private duty agencies should be prepared.
To ensure your business is prepared to deal with cuts in referrals from Medicare providers, or to deal with an influx of new customers, gear up! Arm yourself with the power of a home care software or home care system, like ClearCare. Hire well-trained caregivers. Highlight your commitment to transparency by issuing family member log-ins to your home care software or home care system. And realize that with the proper tools and knowledge, Medicare cuts don’t have to mean cuts to your private duty agency’s success.


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