An eclectic group of health care providers has created a new organization dedicated to advancing home care. The long-term vision of the new Moving Health Home branded company is to fundamentally change the way policymakers think about how, when and where patients are treated.
The coalition unveiled on Wednesday consists of eight different founding organizations: Amazon Care, Landmark Health, Signify Health (NYSE: SGFY), DispatchHealth, Elara Caring, Intermountain Healthcare, Home Care for the Elderly, and Ascent.
These organizations include a home care franchisor, a home health care company, a home health provider, multiple health systems, a value-based care platform, and a subsidiary of one of the world’s largest companies in Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN).
Most likely, the Moving Health Home coalition would have formed regardless of the current health landscape. But COVID-19 has accelerated the need for stronger home care advocacy, Elara Caring’s chief government relations officer Cale Bradford told Home Health Care News in an email.
“The Elara Caring management team has relationships with colleagues across a range of healthcare industries. Our visit last year revealed that we all had unique perspectives,” said Bradford. “In particular, lessons from the provision of more and different types of home care during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
COVID-19 has shown how a wide variety of conditions can and should be treated at home, the coalition believes. The reimbursement models and culture of health care should be adapted to this reality, argue members.
“Moving Health Home was born out of this cross-fertilization of ideas,” added Bradford.
Elara Caring, based in Addison, Texas, was founded in 2018 following the merger of Great Lakes Caring, National Home Health Care and Jordan Health Services. The home health provider currently has more than 225 offices in 16 states.
Moving Health Home will immediately campaign for regulation and reimbursement policies that leverage the home environment as a broad place for care product delivery, Bradford said.
In the near future, this could include further developing the “Choose Home” concept that Keith Myers, CEO of LHC Group Inc. (Nasdaq: LHCG), highlighted during his company’s latest fourth quarter earnings statement. It could also mean pushing for permanent home hospital reimbursement or more direct contract options.
The priorities of Moving Health Home have already been set in meetings over the past few months.
Hopefully, when the goals are met and policy makers are better informed about the benefits of home care, additional goals will be discussed at monthly or bi-weekly meetings between representatives from all eight organizations.
Companies like Landmark Health can benefit from thoughtful home care. Much of the home health care model had to thrive in the Medicare Advantage (MA) space with no real way to get paid for in traditional Medicare.
“Even with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) direct contract program they are implementing … we still see it built on top of the paid, hospital-facing chassis,” Chris Johnson, director of corporate development at Landmark, told HHCN . “And we believe that some important policy changes could occur that would truly innovate and improve access to models of care, especially for patients on original Medicare today.”
Based in Huntington Beach, California, Landmark is a home health care company. The physician-led teams currently serve tens of thousands of patients in 17 states and work with existing individual health care providers.
Despite their differing capabilities, the organizations have agreed on a number of common political priorities.
“We want to make sure that flexibility for home care services is nearly mandatory for certain Medicare Advantage network adequacy needs and truly equal access to those in charge of both service fees and Medicare Advantage,” said Johnson. “We want to ensure that the services covered in the home environment are consistent with the services we know can be clinically provided in the home environment.”
Ultimately, Allianz wants to ensure access for seniors through better and fairer reimbursement standards and practices for home care.
The diversity of the companies involved will undoubtedly make the coalition’s message stronger. Amazon Care’s commitment is particularly noteworthy.
In 2019, Amazon announced that it would be setting up a virtual nursing clinic to give its employees access to telemedicine and home care services. Then in September it expanded that program – now called Amazon Care – to provide home care services to far more employees in Washington state.
With Amazon Care, employees and their relatives can coordinate a visit from a mobile caregiver who can, among other things, conduct personal health examinations, tests and treatments.
His commitment to home care will help raise awareness of the initiative together with his coalition partners.
“Our ultimate goal is to improve patient quality and improve the number of healthy days all Americans have in their communities,” said Johnson. “And finally, and most importantly, to really lower the total cost of care. Because we provide better care upfront, it helps keep people in their homes and in their community. “
Intermountain Healthcare and Ascension are among the most active healthcare systems in home care.
Ascension operates more than 2,600 foster homes – including 145 hospitals and more than 40 senior citizen facilities – in 19 states and Washington DC, Intermountain Healthcare has a network that includes 24 hospitals, a medical group with more than 2,400 doctors, and resident doctors in approximately 160 clinics.
“Intermountain has been in the home for a long time through our home health and hospice business.” Rajesh Shrestha, Intermountain’s chief operating officer for outpatient care, told HHCN in April 2019. “In the last few months we have expanded this to include palliative care, very early basic home care and a little dialysis at home too. In essence, we double as we move upstream to patients’ homes. “
Intermountain has also previously partnered with Lifesprk, a Minnesota-based home care provider, in a joint venture.
DispatchHealth has been arguably the most in the spotlight lately, most recently because of its recent $ 200 million Series D announcement, also on Wednesday.
Dallas-based Signify Health is a value-driven care platform that leverages advanced technology and analytics to move healthcare into the home environment. The Company went public in 2021.
Instead, Home – with more than 1,200 independent and globally operated offices – has long been a home care attorney.
“When you think about the future of the hospital, it looks a lot like your living room,” said Jeff Huber, CEO of Home Instead of Senior Care. recently said HHCN. “I think home care is definitely a growth opportunity for a future workforce. The house is really the only scalable place where we can take care of people. “