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Ankota: Ushering in the Next Generation of Homecare Blog

Therapy Agency Marketing: Using "About Us"

Posted by Will Hicklen on Jul 29, 2013 8:00:00 AM

Dr Jarod Carter PT

How to Convert Visitors into Patients with your Website’s ABOUT Page

Today's post is borrowed from another great blog, DrJarodCarter.com, and discusses a good technique to help with therapy agency marketing. Dr Jarod Carter points out that the "About Us" page on a therapy agency's web site will likely be one of the most viewed, and offers the following advice for making sure that it converts eyeballs to customers more reliably. 
"In a world where the vast majority of people do online searches and visit a company’s website before deciding to do business with them, it is critical  that your site converts visitors into patients; and the About page, with all its traffic, is a key place to do exactly that," opens Dr. Carter.
The biggest mistake that therapy agencies make on their About page is assuming that the page is about them-- the agency. Potential patients are not interested in hearing YOU talk about YOU -- they are interested in how YOU solve their problems. How can you help THEM?
In other words, "they need to know that you have an effective solution to their pain, and that you can get them doing the things they want and love to do again," says Carter. 
He goes on to explain, "You basically have to convey to them, if you are in pain/injured, you are in the right place. We have a solution for you, and if you come to this clinic, your pain will not always hinder you from doing the things you need/want to do.”
After you have related to THEIR problem or discomfort and established that connection, you can then tell them something about your practice to establish your credibility. This is where you get to brag about your experience and credentials. This is also a good point to tell them about any specialties of your practice, if you have any.
Finally, you always want to offer what is known as a "call to action." This might be as simple as providing your contact information and asking them to call you. Preferrably, the tools you use to manage your web site allow you to create "call to action buttons" - essentially, this is a live link to a page where they can provide you with some information. This is an call to action button that Ankota uses to link therapy agencies to a page where they can request a free demo or product information and ask us to contact them. You've probably seen this type of thing before, but feel free to click it and see how it works. And, of course, if you need software to help you manage your therapy business, please DO ask us to contact you!
Learn How Ankota Helps Therapy Agencies
TherapEZ is the most advanced and easiest to use therapy software products available -- and now it's also one of the fastest growing!

Topics: Physical Therapist, Therapy Agency Marketing, Physical Therapy, Will Hicklen, Therapy Software, Physical Therapy software

How to Make Your Home Care Blog Delicious

Posted by Ken Accardi on Jul 23, 2013 12:05:00 PM

Today's post is inspired by a post from Ginny Kenyon's blog entitled 5 Ingredients That Make Your Blog More Delicious authored by guest-blogger Scott Sider.  I love a lot of things about this article.  First, as recently as 3 or 4 years ago we used to talk about the need for a blog  and even the need for a web site for your home care agency.  home care blog recipeThe fact that this blog is about improving your blog is great news.  It shows that most of you are on board and "in the conversation."  I also like the food analogy about making your blog "delicious."  The author is from a writing company called Novo Writing, and it shows in the creativity of the post.

I won't give you the five points but instead will only share the appetizer, where he recommends the following:

  • Look Appetizing - with an irrestable title
  • Be Easy to Swallow - easy to read and digest
  • Taste Great - with superb content
Please go and check out the full post here.

For a bonus, here's an earlier article about the why and how of blogging.

A note about Ginny Kenyon:

Kenyon HomeCare Consulting provides smarter solutions and better outcomes for the home health care industry. Working with Medicare-certified home health, hospice, private pay, and other home health care entities, our expertise supports organizations as they diversify and expand in practical ways. Integrating informed leadership and professional guidance, our expert consulting services support a positive approach to change for interim management, organizational restructuring, and agency startups. - See more at: http://kenyonhcc.com/

Ankota provides software to improve the delivery of care outside the hospital, focusing on efficiency and care coordination. Today Ankota services home health therapy, private duty care, DME Delivery, and care coordination in accountable care organizations, behavioral health, dental care in nursing homes, and more. Ankota is always interested to learn about care coordination challenges where we can help. To learn more, please visit www.ankota.com or contact Ankota.

Can we answer home care software questions?





Topics: Home Care Blog, Home Care Blogs

Care Coordination Reduces ER Visits and Lowers Costs in Oregon

Posted by Will Hicklen on Jul 23, 2013 10:25:00 AM

How Coordinated Care Organizations (CCOs) are Reducing ER Frequent Flyers in Oregon

Care Coordnation efforts result in fewer hospital admissions, lower overall costs, and healthier patients in OR and other programs across the country

Kaiser Health News logo

Kaiser Health News reports that Oregon's new Coordinated Care Organizations are already making an impact on ER visits and lowering total costs for the state's costliest patients, also know as "Frequent Flyers" who visit ERs frequently and result in a large share of admissions. While still very early in the program, the program will run for five years and attempt to prove that providing more proactive help to patients will improve their health while simultaneously reducing the number of ER visits and lowering overall costs.   

Coordinated Care Organizations are authorized in the State of Oregon to focus on the state's Medicaid patients in an effort to get them the care they need, help coordinate services among numerous providers, and help patients transition among care settings. Care Coordination otherwise falls to the patient or a family member, as traditional fee for service models have never accounted for the need to have a Coordinator. The results of ignoring the need to coordinate care are abysmal, and even modest efforts to help coordinate services for patients have shown meaningful improvements in both cost and quality.

The $2 billion project in Oregon, which utilizes a network of Coordinated Care Organizations (CCOs) that the state authorizes, is expected to result in savings of more than $2 billion in the first five years. Once established, programs like this should be self funding and fully sustainable as they expand. 

Gov. John Kitzhaber, a Democrat and a former emergency room doctor, makes the case that should Oregon's model ultimately prove successful and were it to be adopted by the other 49 states, the net savings to the system would be in excess of $1.5 TRILLION over 10 years. To put this in perspective, Congress is looking to find ways to cut Medicare spending by a mere $1.2 trillion. Hmmm. Perhaps the way to reduce health care spending by the goverment is to actually develop models like this that are both more effective and more efficient? Most health care experts agree on this but are divided on exactly how to do it. Models like Oregon's CCOs, federally funnded Care Transitions Initiatives (CTIs), and Accountable Care models are essentially aimed at solving the same problems of cost and quality. Even local programs to simmply reduce hospital readmissions essentially aim to solve some of the same problems. Organizations like the National Transitions of Care Coalition (NTOCC) dedicate their work to investigating ways to better manage Care Transitions to achieve better results and reduce overall costs of care. 

Of course, there are challenges. Does Oregon's early success guarantee ultimate success? Can these first models such as Oregon's CCOs support large scale? Will ACOs succeed? Can populatons of patients be analyzed properly to identify those at greatest risk? Can care delivery be managed efficiently on a large scale? Technology must be leveraged to identify patients, enable and measure these models, keep costs low, and assure scalability to support larger patient populations. Post acute providers will also be a big part of these answers and must also automate to improve efficiencies and scale now. 

Current technologies are often an obstacle to these programs. Traditional Electronic Medical Records (EMRs) such as those from companies like EPIC, McKesson and Cerner are limited to large hospital systems and were built to support an old fee for service paradigm. They were never intended to coordinate multiple providers or different types of services as patients transition among care settings. For that, a new health care specific "work management" platform such as Ankota's is needed. Fortunately, other industries have pioneered these models and developed highly efficient operating models that health care providers can learn from. Wiith reliable and secure mobile and internet technologies already available, it won't be long before these platforms become commonplace in health care, too.  

We at Ankota believe that models like this are only beginning to scratch the surface of what is possible through better care coordination and improved operating efficiencies. That's why we've solved Care Coordination requirements through our Helathcare Delivery Management platform, which connects providers and helps them both coordinate care and operate efficiently. To learn how Ankota's Care Coordination technology enables models like this, click the really cool blue button below and we'll send you some information. 

Ankota Care Coordination Technology Improves Care -- Click Here!


See related story on Fierce Healthcare by clicking the logo below
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Topics: Care Coordination, transitional care, Care Transitions, NTOCC

Social Work Reduces Avoidable Readmissions by Half

Posted by Will Hicklen on Jul 22, 2013 11:24:00 AM

Fierce Health IT title






Many Care Transitions Initiatives and Avoidable Readmissions efforts already recognize that social work or other behavioral health services are a key component to the health care ecosystem. Still, many more struggle with how to consistently integrate and coordinate social services with the medical model which is itself not well coordinated. This piece in Fierce Healthcare makes the point that a systemic approach to care that consistently integrates social work into the model both improves results and lowers overall costs. Ankota's technology already helps programs like this coordinate medical and non-medical services in models such as this and allows providers to do so on larger scale and with greater efficiency.

FierceHealth IT Logo

The study adds to a growing evidence showing integrating health and social services can lead to significant savings for hospitals. 

"A social worker can create savings equal to his own salary and benefits just by preventing seven readmissions a year--and the patient's quality of life is improved significantly in the process," Shawn Berkowitz, medical director of the study, said in the statement.

The article also references research conducted in the UK that shows that discharges can be accelerated when social services are included. This is the result of faster and more complete assessments when social work is included in the model. 


Ankota Care Coordination Technology Improves Care -- Click Here!


Read more: Study: Social work interventions reduce readmission rates by half - FierceHealthcare http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/story/study-social-work-interventions-reduce-readmission-rates-half/2013-07-05#ixzz2ZmuSxLGH 

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Topics: Community Based Care, Readmissions, Care Coordination, Care Transitions, NTOCC, Accountable Care Organizations, Avoidable Readmissions

One Thing Successful Home Care Leaders Must Never Do!

Posted by Ken Accardi on Jul 16, 2013 9:43:00 AM

I saw a great article today on LinkedIn that I wanted to share.  The original article is entitled "The One Thing Successful People Never Do" and as always I'd encourage you to read the full article there.   In a nutshell, the one thing that successful people never do is that they never give up.  As children, we were all told that "If at first you don't succeed, try try again" and this article proves how important that is.

As home care leaders, every one of us has made mistakes.  Perhaps Successful Home Care Leaderswe wasted money on marketing that didn't work, or really thought that our business would boom based on our relationship with an assisted living facility and it never panned out.  But those of us who are still here and love this business haven't given up.  We're not afraid to try things and to make mistakes.  We're following in the footsteps of some great people, a few of them I'll list here and you can find more in the LinkedIn Article.

  • Steve Jobs: was once fired from Apple
  • Oprah Winfrey: was told that she was unfit for television
  • Walt Disney: was fired from a Kansas City newspaper for not being creative enough
  • H. J. Heinz: failed in the horseradish business before ketchup
The next time you're having a rough day in your home care organization, think about these successful people, and the successful people in your life (including yourself).
If by chance, one of the mistakes you've made in your home care organization is choosing bad software, perhaps we can help at Ankota.  Let us know by clicking the button below.
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Ankota provides software to improve the delivery of care outside the hospital, focusing on efficiency and care coordination. Today Ankota services home health therapy, private duty care, DME Delivery, and care coordination in accountable care organizations, behavioral health, dental care in nursing homes, and more. Ankota is always interested to learn about care coordination challenges where we can help. To learn more, please visit www.ankota.com or contact Ankota.

Topics: Home Care Entrepreneurship, Elderly Care, Home Health Aide Software, Home Care Best Practices

5 Ways to get Fantastic Support from your Home Care Software Vendor

Posted by Ken Accardi on Jul 8, 2013 1:27:00 PM

One of the most rewarding parts of my job is providing technical support to home care customers.  This morning I got a note from a customer who thanked me for setting up their holiday payments in the system.  Prior to coming on board with Ankota, they had to calculate their holiday billing and pay rates manually and he was genuinely excited to see it happen automatically.  Moreover, he took the time to email our support group to thank us.  The next time he needs support, guess what, he'll get great service.

Home Care Software Holiday Support

Inspired by that email, here are some suggestions on how to get great support from your home care software company:

  1. Be proactive: When something is going to change in your organization and it's going to be the first time you'll be trying something with the software.  Plan it out and try it out ahead of time.  Your support group will be happy to review your plan, suggest best practices, and do everything they can to make your transition smooth.  Holidays, acquisitions, pricing changes, new versions of Quickbooks, and most other things are known well in advance.
  2. Talk to Your Software Vendor Regularly: One home care software supportof our favorite customers checks in with us every few months, asks to see new features we've developed, tells us what's on their roadmap, and asks if there are ways they can help us.  When they ask for support, we jump on it right away!
  3. Don't Cry Wolf: Most issues that you encounter are not emergencies. If one caregiver can't get through on telephony, or you'd like to be able to sort a certain report in a different way, or you can't remember how to do a billing adjustment that needs to go onto next week's invoice you should clarify in your request that it's not urgent, and you should submit it electronically (at Ankota we prefer email)
  4. Provide Detail: When a support request explains what you're trying to achieve, how you're trying it, which patient, client and or care giver is involved, for what date, and how quickly you need the issue resolved (without crying wolf) you are likely to get fast and excellent help.  As a software developer, I've always had the experience that if I can recreate the problem, I can fix it.  So you should do everything possible to make the issue easy to reproduce.  Note that almost all support teams have "levels of support" where the dedicated support people are "good users with good people skills" who can solve most easy things, then there are subject experts like the person who developed a certain piece of code, and then architects and CTOs and top management.  The first level people are ready to support right away, whereas the others are not.  So do everything you can to make sure that the first level person understands the issue.
  5. Be Nice, Constructive and On the Same Team: My wife and best friend in the world tends to get really frazzled when something goes wrong with travel arrangements or the cable TV and she tends to yell at the person who answers the phone at customer support.  I'm more calm and factual and I usually get much better service.  If you're nice to your vendor, you'll get better and quicker service.

I will be brutally honest and say that we consider all of our customers like they're our children, and we love them all.  But we definitely like some better than others, and the ones that we like the most are the ones who  observe the five best practices listed above.

If you've tried the five above approaches with your home care software providers and they haven't been helpful or responsive, give us a call.  We'd love to have more favorite children.


Can we answer home care software questions?
Ankota provides software to improve the delivery of care outside the hospital, focusing on efficiency and care coordination. Today Ankota services home health therapy, private duty care, DME Delivery, and care coordination in accountable care organizations, behavioral health, dental care in nursing homes, and more. Ankota is always interested to learn about care coordination challenges where we can help. To learn more, please visit www.ankota.com or contact Ankota.


Topics: Holiday Wishes, Home Care Entrepreneurship, Elderly Care, Home Care Best Practices, Home Care, Home Care Scheduling Software

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Ankota provides software to improve the delivery of care outside the hospital, focusing on efficiency and care coordination. Ankota's primary focus is on Care Transitions for Reeadmisison avoidance and on management of Private Duty non-medical home care. To learn more, please visit www.ankota.com or contact Ankota.

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