Oct 26 2023
Reading Time: 4 minutes
We know what it takes to face the challenges of implementing new software in home health and hospice agencies because we’ve been in your shoes. Quite literally. Meet Coralina Charles. She’s the senior director of professional services at CitusHealth — and one of our more than 345 team members with provider experience. We sat down with her to hear how her story started, how it’s going, and, most importantly, how it can help agencies like yours solve your most pressing challenges.
Q: How did you get your start on the provider side of healthcare?
Coralina: I started right out of college as a temp, and I worked my way through all the different processes within the offices of home health, hospice and senior living. I ended up working for a decade in home health and hospice agencies as an office manager and biller. And during that time, there was an opportunity for me to serve as a consultant as the agency implemented a home-grown EMR. So, I traveled to different offices helping staff get up to speed on the software and new processes.
Q: How does all that experience help you in your role today on the software side?
Coralina: It has been crucial because I’ve done pretty much every non-clinical role within home health and hospice, which means I’ve seen the highs and lows of the industry. And having been there before helps me go into implementations truly knowing what the customers are experiencing, what goes into their operations and what they need.
My provider experience also allows me to develop lasting relationships at go-live and beyond because the agencies know that I’m not just a trainer coming in to tell them to push this or that button. They take it to heart that I’ve experienced it just like them and understand what they’re going through.
Q: What’s the most critical factor a software provider can bring to a home health and hospice agency?
Coralina: I’d say the most critical piece is to understand the agency and know what will be most impactful for them. And for most agencies, giving them access to their data is going to be a big win. When I was in an agency as an office manager and in billing, it was vitally important for us to be able to quickly put our hands on the data we needed — like clinician notes and diagnosis codes – so we could efficiently get bills out the door to get paid. So, your software provider is responsible for making your agency’s processes more efficient.
Q: What are some of the top industry challenges you see the industry facing right now, and how does CitusHealth help solve them?
Coralina: There are a lot of challenges, but revenue recognition and resource issues are two enormous ones for home health and hospice agencies. They’re trying to do a lot with little reimbursement because of changing rules and regulations. And they’re also having to take care of patients with staffing shortages, which impacts satisfaction across the board.
With the staff shortages and staff satisfaction in general, CitusHealth helps by making it easier to communicate with other staff as well as patients and providers. Instead of having to pick up the phone, for example, our patient engagement app allows you to send forms and documents to patients for their electronic signature. And you can use the app for physicians to electronically sign orders that are immediately integrated back into the medical record through the EMR, which helps with faster revenue recognition.
There’s also a subset challenge that we work hard to address for agencies. Because clinicians and staff are already dealing with a lot, there can be resistance to implementing new technology for fear that it will create more issues. The surest way to get buy-in is to make the software so easy to use that your team feels the benefits right away.
Q: What’s the most satisfying part of your job?
Coralina: I’ve been in professional services at ResMed for 12 years and in my current role of establishing a professional services team at CitusHealth for 2 years. I learn every day from our team of other industry experts who’ve also been there. And it’s extremely satisfying to know we’ve built something to really assist customers as they’re implementing new software and they’re trying to figure out: “what now.” Pairing our agency experience with our software experience allows our team to do just that.
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