4 Challenges of staffing, revenue, and growth (and how to overcome them)

4 Challenges of staffing, revenue, and growth (and how to overcome them)

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By: Terri Embry, RN, BSBA, Customer Success, CitusHealth

When solving the workflow challenges faced by home-based care providers between staffing, revenue retention, and growth, technology plays a key role. With the right digital tools, overcoming these challenges can mean different outcomes for different organizations. Whether it’s providing the best possible healthcare experience for patients and their families, having an educated and compassionate care team, or attracting the best talent and giving them work-life balance—technology can make all the difference.

Here are four challenges of staffing, revenue retention, and growth, how they affect provider and patient outcomes, and how to overcome them.

A shift in patient care
Healthcare is experiencing multiple shifts in patient care. While some of these changes are regulatory—including the shift from fee-for-service to value-based care as well as the Home Health Value-Based Purchasing model—others have been accelerated by the pandemic.

Social distancing forced companies to offer more options for delivery and at-home experiences. Those conveniences are now expected in healthcare as well, where more and more patients want to age in place. They also have higher expectations as consumers, choosing providers who can communicate in real time and offer remote patient support.

It’s critical that home-based care organizations embrace strategies that will help them to adapt to these changes so they can meet the needs of patients and stay compliant.

The Great Resignation and impacted revenue
With the COVID-19 pandemic also came the Great Resignation. Staffing shortages affected—and continue to impact—every industry, including healthcare. Beyond nursing staff, the shortage affects critical business support positions such as intake, care coordination, and billing. This staffing gap can severely impact cash flow in multiple ways:

  • With less staff, the patient experience is at risk.
  • The likelihood of hiring less experienced staff can lead to inaccurate communication and poor compliance.
  • Higher wages, overtime, and sign-on bonuses increase cost per patient.

To overcome the staffing shortage and its impact on revenue, have a solid grasp of cost of turnover and the cost of that avoidable revenue loss. When you understand these numbers, you can then determine a more accurate ROI as you consider solutions to solve for these challenges.

Supply and demand
While the demand for experienced staff is high, the supply to fill these positions is low. Annual retirements among baby boomer nurses are accelerating, many are leaving due to stressful work environments, well-paying nurse travel positions are pulling seasoned staff away, and they lack true work-life balance.

Technology can help overcome these challenges, as the younger workforce expects digital tools to help them do their jobs and technology can reduce non-clinical workload.

Nurse burnout
Overburdened home care nurses may experience burnout, which can increase the likelihood of patient hospitalization, as well as staff turnover. Common burnout causes include many phone calls to coordinate home visits, time-consuming documentation, feeling disconnected from colleagues, and lack of work-life balance.

The patient experience is directly connected to the staff experience. Overworked nurses, or any team member, can lead to poor patient satisfaction, which is why it’s important to adopt the right tools that can make you competitive in your referral markets, and in recruiting top talent. Payor penalties, patients opting for another service provider, or hospital readmissions can all affect new revenue and the ability to bill timely and retain the revenue earned.

Are you ready to face these challenges head on? Schedule a CitusHealth demo today to learn how your workflow optimization plan can help make each staff-to-patient encounter more meaningful.

Terri Embry
Terri Embry
RN, BSBA, Vice President of Customer Success, CitusHealth

A registered nurse with a bachelor’s degree in business and marketing, Terri’s career has spanned almost three decades in regional and national home, specialty and long-term care infusion operations, sales, and informatics leadership. Her experience with cutting-edge workflow optimization has allowed her to understand the challenges both customers and their patients face. With CitusHealth, she leads the adoption and retention team helping to bring the voice of customers to the product development roadmap.

Terri has been in leadership, sales, and nursing roles for companies such as BioScrip, Omnicare, and Olsten-Kimberly Quality Care.