It used to be that when a home care agency received a call from a client it couldn't staff, the agency would simply refer that client to three other reputable care partners in the community.
But with staffing shortages at their worst in a decade, now those other agencies are also turning clients away.
To deal with this problem, At Home Nursing Care has created a wait list protocol to help match clients with care as soon as staff is available.
Rather than being turned away, we are taking down potential clients' needs, wishes and preferences and then keeping a daily log of changes in staffing levels to see what care we can provide.
Home care client levels may change as clients improve and no longer need services, or as they transition into end of life care.
The waitlist system keeps potential clients informed of which staff hours have opened up and how we can incorporate them into a plan of care if the new client is agreeable.
This wait list system is only allowable for private duty nursing or non-medical in home care. Clients who need Medicare Certified nursing or physical therapy services must be admitted within 48 hours of referral to the agency by the hospital, skilled nursing facility or physician.
However, we have not seen the staffing strain on Medicare Services as much as home care services, partly because Medicare services are only intermittent visits a few times a week, not daily or overnight or around the clock shifts.
At Home Nursing Care, Inc. currently has adequate staff to admit Medicare patients to provide nursing services, physical therapy and occupational therapy.
We are grateful to our dedicated team of home care staff who have worked throughout the pandemic and allow us to continue to admit non-medical home care clients on our waitlist.