The novel coronavirus known as COVID-19 needs no introduction. By now, all of America has moved to social distancing and most of us are running our home care agencies from home.
I'm sure that by now you've received emails from the CEOs of every company, health institution and academic institution you've ever heard of telling you that they care about your safety and then telling you what they're doing to keep you safe. In some cases these solutions are literally what they're doing to keep you safe while for many others (like our kids' schools) they're telling us that their operations are running in limited capacity or shutting down for a while.
The goal in this case is not to repeat what you're hearing virtually everywhere else, but rather to focus on specific best practices for home care agencies during the crisis.
There’s a lot to learn and know about COVID-19. On your left will appear a menu of topics or you can scroll down to see them all. Note that much of this information has been shared by home care agencies that we're working with and from home care vendors other than Ankota. In each of these cases, we're giving them credit and where available directing you to the resources on their sites.
One of the main concerns with COVID-19 is that if too many people get infected with the virus all at once that the healthcare system won't be able to handle it. This has led to the social distancing that we're all experiencing and it is also driving legislative and executive action at the level of the federal government. There's a big piece of legislation called the "Families First Coronavirus Responce Act," also known as H.R. 6201.
A concern, however, is that the legislation doesn't make it clear that home care is a necessary and critical part of the health care system.
For this reason, all people related to the home care industry are encouraged to message their senators about the importance of Home Care in managing this crisis.
Click the image below to message your Senator.
Several organizations have stepped up to provide free COVID-19 education for home care agencies. Here are two of them:
From Home Care Pulse:
From Care Academy:
Living and working in social isolation is scary for everyone and unprecedented in our lifetimes, and if it's scary for us, imagine how the elderly seniors who we care for feel. As agency owners and home care managers, our industry isn't easy to begin with and when a global pandemic comes along, it doesn't get easier. Most of what we've shared here talks about "what" to do in the face of this crisis. We also have to think about "how" we need to do it, and the answer is that we need to do it with compassion.
Here are some ideas for acting with compassion during the COVID-19 crisis:
Home care attorney Elizabeth E. Hogue, Esq. has been so moved by the COVID-19 crisis that she shared a recent email entitled "A Love Letter to Home Care" which is shared below:
For Ankota's customers and other users of other home care software working remotely due to the effects of COVID-19, here are a few tips, suggestions, and Best Practices to help make the transition from office to remote working as smooth as possible.
Here are a few notes on how to work efficiently and to stay motivated through this challenging time.
We're all in this together, and we'll get through it as a community. If you have additional suggestions, let us know and we'll share them in an upcoming note.
COVID-19 will cause missed visits home care visits for several reasons, including the following:
Your home care software should track visit cancellations and have cancellation reasons. Your steps forward are as follows:
Another capability of your home care software is it's ability so assign care plan tasks to your clients and having caregivers report on the completion of tasks or the status of clients.
Several Ankota clients have already supplemented the care plans of all their clients to ask COVID-19 related questions. A set of questions, courtesy of Elara Caring in Missouri are as follows:
Home Care Pulse, who also provided one of the free COVID-19 training modules (see above), combined forces with Savii and MyCNAjobs to hold a webinar on how to manage caregivers. To view the webinar, click on the image below:
There's an overabundance of information on COVID-19 but these are some of the most authoritative sites covering the COVID-19 pandemic:
If you're an Ankota customer or have attended one of our webinars or a demo, you know that we conduct most of our meetings using a web meeting system.
If you'd like to conduct a web meeting with your staff or a remote "in-service" with your caregivers we can help. Please email Joel at email@example.com and he'll set it up for you.