If you’ve made the decision to start a home healthcare business, that’s great news. This is an evergreen industry that is expected to grow immensely in the next few years. But before you benefit from this profitable industry, you need to set-up operations and get your business off the ground.
So, if you’ve been looking for information about how to start a home healthcare company in the United States, you’ve come to the right place. Here we take you through the step-by-step process involved in setting-up a home healthcare business:
- Conduct research to identify your market
Not every locality will require a home care service provider. Therefore, you need to do research to identify which neighborhoods have the more senior residents or the family profiles that might require constant home care. You could also do online surveys to get feedback (read here for tips on creating a free survey).
You can either speak to the residents face-to-face or hire a market research company to do the research for you. You can also speak to local pharmacists to understand the profile of customers who visit their shop.
Once you know where these neighborhoods are, you can be selective which ones to target. Also look into the price of private home care.
- Develop a business plan for your new company
A business plan is essential when applying for finance from investors and venture capitalists. It acts as proof that you have a solid plan to use their investment wisely.
Your business plan should include details about your:
- Short-term and long-term goals.
- Target patients and market size.
- Expected operational expenses.
- Marketing plans.
- Various sources of funding.
- Staff, their qualifications and their expertise.
- Range of home healthcare services & their prices.
- Future growth plans.
- Procure the finances you need to start your business
There are multiple ways to get financing for your home care business. You can either use your personal funds or ask your family/friends for investments. You can approach VC’s and angel investors. You can even get crowdfunding by applying on a crowdfunding platform. Or you can apply for a medical practice loan, such as Kapitus healthcare loan.
- Register your business with your State Government
Once the money is in place, you need to choose your company name and structure (sole proprietorship, partnership etc.). Next, you need to register your new business with your State Government. You don’t need to register your company with the Federal Government unless you’re planning to run a new home care facility under a new name. The registration fees will depend on your bespoke business particulars.
Depending on which state you register your business in, you will get both the Employer Identification Number (EIN) and Tax Identification Number (NIP), which you need to pay taxes, file documents and run your business.
Finally, you should apply for your state’s relevant home care licenses and permits. These are absolutely essential actually to start working as a home healthcare provider. You can contact your respective state health department to get information about the licenses and permits.
- Open a bank account
After completing your home care company registration, you need to open a business bank account in your company’s name. Your EIN and NIP will be needed here to open the account, along with your business documents.
- Get liability insurance for your home healthcare business
Now that your business is ready to start running, it’s also important for you to take steps to protect your company against possible problems.
While you and your team try to do everything in your power to care for and treat your patients, you can’t control the home care outcome. In some cases, your patients or their families may sue you for negligence or professional mistakes. This may lead to lawsuits and compensations. A Home Health Care Insurance can help protect you against these claims and potential compensation.
There are two types of insurance that home health care businesses should consider. One is professional liability insurance which provides your business with the coverage against any damage caused by professional mistake or negligence.
The second is the General Liability Insurance which protects you if there is any bodily injury or financial loss caused by your service.
The presence of this insurance can mitigate your risk.
- Hire trained and qualified nursing staff and carers
At some point after starting your business, you will need to hire more people to take care of your growing patient base. Or, you may not be a medical personnel yourself and may need to hire qualified and experienced staff. These days you have staffing agencies who are specialized in the home healthcare industry. They can help you find and vet applicants and also conduct background checks on them, before hiring.
- Connect with the medical fraternity for access to equipment and medication
The advantage of a home healthcare business is that you don’t need to invest in a medical facility or hospital machinery. But you may need a few equipment and medications to provide the care your patients need. Setting up a movable cart for a workstation on wheels would also help administer medication or fluids to patients safely. To obtain these resources, you will need to develop good professional partnerships with doctors (for prescriptions & medical advice), pharmaceutical representatives (for drugs) and medical equipment distributors (for tools and materials). You can either purchase these resources or rent them, as needed.
- Promote your services and find patients
Once you have completed all of the above steps, you are finally ready to start operations. It’s best if you create a website and social media pages on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. You can use these to promote your services.
Even sending newsletters with the morning paper can be great advertisement. If you are starting your home healthcare business in your own neighborhood, going door-to-door to introduce yourself and offer your services can be helpful since it adds a personal touch to your business.