A new quality control solution for in-home and personal care workers
It’s no secret that in-home healthcare professionals are some of the most overworked and underappreciated employees in our country. According to CareerCast, the market for skilled workers in the home health industry is projected to grow to 47 percent by 2025, which will require half a million more home health aides and 750,000 more personal care aids.
Even so, the median salary for this type of work currently sits at around $23,000 per year, and a survey by the National Employment Law Project found that 90 percent of home health aides had to work some hours off the clock.
A Bloomberg article describes a situation wherein a home health aide in New York sued her employer for wage theft when she worked two days straight without being paid for the night hours. Her employer assumed she’d be sleeping. In fact, she said, her nights were not restful, as she continued to provide care throughout the night.
Introducing Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) systems
Section 12006 of the CURES Act mandates states implement new systems to account for safety, quality, and accuracy of personal care and in-home care services. Both types of care providers will soon be required to electronically verify the type of service they perform, the individual receiving service, the date, location, provider of service, and the start and end time of the services provided.
Personal Care Services (PCS) will need to be compliant with the CURES Act by January 1, 2019, while Home Healthcare Services (HHCS) will need to be by January 1, 2023. With six months to go, PCS employers could be scrambling to find an Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) system that records care information.
Whether the implementation of EVV systems will improve caregivers’ quality of life and reduce the number of wage and hour lawsuits filed against employers in this industry remains to be seen. But with greater accuracy of what services are being provided and when they’re provided could come in handy for workers providing care through the night or working longer-than-expected shifts.
As of now, it seems it’s up to agencies to determine the tracking system they use to record information, but each system must comply with the law by verifying:
- The type of service performed
- The individual receiving the service
- The date of the service
- The location of service delivery
- The individual providing the service
- The time service begins and ends
If you’re an in-home care provider or personal care agency, you have six months to find an EVV system that works best for your employees and the individuals they take care of. For more information on these systems, check out the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ guide to Electronic Visit Verification.
If you operate or work for an in-home care agency or personal care organization, what are your thoughts on the new EVV system requirement? How will you prepare for the shift?