Many senior living operators have launched home care service lines over the last few years.
Doing so is not easy. But if done correctly, it can unlock tremendous value from both a caregiver and client perspective.
To that end, HomeCare Advocacy Network has made its name in the industry by helping senior living operators get their home care businesses up and running. The Omaha, Nebraska-based company understands that there is a synergistic business opportunity for senior living operators in the home care market.
“In our study, we found that about 10% of all of our home care clients become residents, so each resident generally generates an annual revenue of about $63,000 in that model,” Mark Goetz, president and CEO of HomeCare Advocacy Network, said during a presentation at the annual LeadingAge conference, earlier this month.
Clients will often reach out to senior living operators when they have other care needs, looking for a referral. This gives companies with new home care segments the opportunity to zero-in and keep that business under the same roof.
“This keeps you from having to fight later on down the road,” Goetz said. “Later on down the road, when the family’s investigating again, then you’re competing with other senior living communities for that movement. But when [a client] calls, if you can get into the home, and start the care continuum process, that’s the opportunity to maximize your market demand.”
In fact, when surveyed by HomeCare Advocacy Network, 95% of respondents said they’d be very interested, or somewhat interested, if a respected local senior care community offered home-based care services to clients prior to moving into the community.
Respondents also indicated that they’d want some sort of continuity of caregiver despite a change in care setting. This indicates that there’s an opportunity for senior living operators with home care service lines to appeal to clients on this basis.
At senior living communities that have home care service lines, there’s also more flexibility for caregivers, which can be a potential recruitment and retention boon as well.
“Giving caregivers an option to work one-on-one versus in a congregate environment, inside of a brand that’s well respected, is just a huge opportunity for a lot of senior living companies from what we’ve seen,” Goetz said.
Despite these natural advantages, senior living operators shouldn’t take for granted how challenging the industry can be to break into.
“If you’re thinking about home care as an opportunity, just don’t underestimate it,” Goetz said. “I think home care has failed within senior living organizations because it’s been underestimated — it seems simpler than it really is. You have to have a lot of patience, but long-term there’s an unbelievable amount of value.”