How to Start a Home Healthcare Business – A Simple Guide

home healthcare

In the United States, the home healthcare industry is an $84 billion business. There are currently more than 386,000 home health care businesses employing approximately 1.7 million people in the U.S.

The population of 65 and older residents is expected to increase to 19.6% by 2030. Home health care is one of the largest growing industries and a good reason to start a home healthcare business.

Two Options

Home healthcare offers two business options. Skilled home health care provides nursing or therapeutic services done in the patient’s home. This can include social work, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and speech therapy.

Non-medical home healthcare includes assistance with daily living activities. This is a common need for senior citizens and can include meal preparation, housekeeping, and transportation.

Home healthcare is a service conducted for the convenience of the patient, not the caregiver. It is a job that requires compassion, a desire to help people, and a positive attitude. 

Start a Home Healthcare Business

The requirements for starting either type of home healthcare business are similar. The non-medical business is easier and less expensive to start.

Legal Steps to Set Up Business

There are several steps you need t take to make sure you have a properly registered business.

1. Pick a business name and register the business with your state. You may also need to choose a registered office.

2. Check on any city or county business licenses required.

3. Do market research to make sure your community is not oversaturated with caregivers. This is also a chance to see if local caregivers are lacking in services you can provide.

4. Set up your business entity – sole proprietor, partnership, limited liability company, S corporation, or C corporation. It is advised you talk to an attorney or CPA to determine the best format for your business.

5. Obtain an employer ID number (EIN) using IRS form SS-4.

Prepare Your Office

6. Establish a business checking account, business credit card, and apply for any business loans needed.

7. Set up a computerized accounting system.

8. Write or buy a policy and procedures manual that details client admissions, plan of care, scheduling, employee and payroll records, orientation, in-service training, and client billing.

9.  Interview and hire caregivers, performing background checks on each.

10. Set up an office in your home or find an office location to rent.

11. Connect with referral sources such as hospitals, long-term care facilities, nursing homes, social work organizations, or even a healthcare marketing company.

12. Build a website to promote your business

13. Develop a service contact. This should be signed by clients prior to providing treatment and should specify payment terms and conditions, the services provided and expectations of the client. A contract will minimize the risk of any potential legal disputes.

14. Skilled/medical homeworker businesses will need to apply for state and Medicare/Medicaid Certification. This can take a year or more to obtain.

Start a Profitable Business

Home healthcare franchises are one of the five most profitable franchises. New businesses make an average of $248,000 in their first year, with 12-15% of that being net profit.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 17% job growth for nursing assistants and 38% growth for home health aides through 2024. That means now is the perfect time to start a home healthcare business.

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