With more than 500 initial licensure applications pending approval in California, home health agencies are being forced to wait up to two years before receiving their license. To help combat this delay, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has given home health agencies the option of working with a CMS-deemed accreditation organization to obtain an initial licensure survey. CDPH is encouraging home health agencies to take advantage of this new option in order to expedite their licensure approval process.
The Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC), a nationally recognized accreditation organization known for providing value, integrity, and the industry’s best customer service, is one of the approved accreditors.
“ACHC is ready to immediately accept applications and assist start-up agencies seamlessly through the licensure process,” said Teresa Harbour, ACHC’s Program Director for Home Health, Hospice, and Private Duty. “Meeting the needs of California providers is essential to ACHC, so we have created accreditation prep tools and resources specific for these providers.”
Faina Neveleva, Administrator of Signature Home Health Care, was grateful for the training and support her agency received from ACHC. She attended the ACHC Home Health workshop in preparation for her agency’s recent accreditation survey.
“The workshops were so educational. Lisa [ACHC Clinical Compliance Educator] was very patient and answered all of our questions,” added Neveleva. “The free ACHC Accreditation Guide to Success workbook tells you exactly what the Surveyors are looking for. We rely on this so much.”
ACHC is accepting applications for home health licensure and accreditation in California and has already started surveying agencies. Once the application is completed, ACHC guarantees agencies will be surveyed within 25 days.
“We were impressed with how simple and straightforward the ACHC application process was and how quickly we were surveyed,” said Neveleva. “Throughout the whole process, our Account Advisor was very knowledgeable and helpful, returning calls usually within an hour and making sure all our questions were answered.”
Partnering with ACHC not only provides a faster route to licensure, it also allows agencies to reap the benefits of accreditation – ensuring compliance with the Medicare Conditions of Participation (CoPs) and the highest quality standards.
VNA Hospice & Palliative Care of Southern California has been accredited for over 20 years and recently switched to ACHC. Paula Natale, Director of Regulatory Affairs, said the organization switched because the ACHC Accreditation Standards are easy to understand and are more applicable to the home health and hospice services provided by the agency.
“It is a way for us to show our patients, payors, and referral sources that we have achieved a higher standard above and beyond the Medicare CoPs and that we are committed to continuously improving the care we provide,” Natalesaid, reflecting on the value of accreditation.
With more than 1,200 accredited home health agencies across the country, ACHC prides itself on the fact that 98 percent of customers say they would recommend ACHC – and Natale agrees.
“I have recommended ACHC to several colleagues,” she said. “Having experience with other accrediting organizations, I can say that the knowledge, professionalism, and customer service from ACHC Account Advisors, Surveyors, and Clinical team is unmatched in the industry.”
ACHC is a nationally recognized nonprofit accreditation organization with CMS deeming authority for Home Health, Hospice, and DMEPOS, and a Quality Management System that is certified to ISO 9001:2015. ACHC’s consultative approach to accreditation is designed to improve the quality of patient care while enhancing business efficiencies through service-specific standards and industry-based best practices. Consider attending the ACHC Home Health Accreditation and CoP Intensive workshop January 30-31 in Phoenix, AZ.