Amedisys Personal Care Division Expands to Tennessee

Amedisys Inc. (Nasdaq: AMED) is continuing to expand its presence in the private duty home care arena by acquiring East Tennessee Personal Care Service.

The transaction is expected to close on May 1, and will grow AMED’s Personal Care Division to 2,700 aides serving 15,600 clients annually, the Baton Rouge, Louisiana-based company announced Friday. The acquisition price was not disclosed.

Already one of the largest Medicare-certified home health providers nationally, Amedisys took the leap into private duty in early 2016 through the $28 million acquisition of Associated Home Care, based in Andover, Massachusetts. A subsequent $4.4 million transaction, announced in August 2016, expanded Amedisys’ private duty footprint in the Bay State. At that time, the company identified New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee as its next potential personal care markets.

Knoxville-based East Tennessee Personal Care Service has about $5 million in annualized revenue and 200 employees. It serves six Tennessee counties: Knox, Loudon, Blount, Roane, Anderson, and Monroe.

This first personal care office will join Amedisys’ 43 home health and 11 hospice locations in Tennessee, Mike Trigilio, president of AMED’s Personal Care Division, told Home Health Care News.

“East Tennessee is really a sweet spot for Amedisys, and we’re strong across the state,” he said. “This is a great opportunity to build out the continuum, with overlapping care centers.”

This is the same strategy that Amedisys has been pursuing in Massachusetts, where it is seeking to create an integrated post-acute network of personal care, home health, and hospice (see image below). The idea is that being able to control more of the continuum could give the company a strategic edge, as evolving health care payment models increasingly reward greater care coordination and population health management.

But the addition of personal care also should lengthen the period of time that Amedisys works with clients, considering that these services are what enable people to live in their homes over the long term, Trigilio said.

“It’s about transitioning to an aging in place company,” he said. “Personal care is what drives that initial stabilization in the home, and allows people to live there potentially for three, four, five, six years.”

Like in Massachusetts, Amedisys will work with Medicaid programs that pay for personal care in Tennessee, as well as with private pay clients.

Amedisys shares were trading down 0.35% at $50.91 as of late afternoon Monday.

Written by Tim Mullaney

Photo Credit: David Wilson, CC BY 2.0

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