What to Look for When Buying a Home Health Agency

Home healthcare is a growing industry in our country. As we are seeing record numbers in our population enter the advanced stages of their life, the demand for quality medical care in the home is on the rise. For businesses, this trend poses an opportunity for investment and growth with thepurchase of a home health agency (or HHA).

With any transaction in the medical industry, however, there are many risks and regulations to consider. Not only must businesses interested in acquiring an HHA comply with state and federal regulations, but also, in their proposed care of others' well-being, foresee the resources needed to commit to best practices.

One of the first things a potential purchaser will want to review is the agency's statuses and accreditation. On the federal level, to be deemed approved for Medicare and Medicaid participation, this must be reflected with accreditation from The Joint Commission, Accreditation Commission for Health Care, and Community Health Accreditation Program. On the state side, making sure that the HHA is recognized and in good standing with the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services and other agencies is also necessary. It is important to spot any gaps or lapses in these statuses that could delay access to key health care programs and also identify any compliance issues the company has struggled with in the past.

Another crucial factor to the long-term success of an HHA is its actual medical staff. It is essential that all caregivers are aware of and follow all policies and regulations set by Medicare and Medicaid deeming authorities - along with best medical practices in general. It may be also important to check the HHA's disciplinary guidelines and the service record of its current staff. An abundance of infractions-or a complete lack of disciplinary actions-could be a red flag for lax hiring practices and possible liabilities.

Medicare participation is a key part of HHA operation and the 36-month rule is a common hurdle HHA buyers must clear. The 36-month rule is this: if an HHA is sold less than 36 months from its enrollment in Medicare, then transfer of provider numbers and agreements is prohibited. This rule is meant to ensure that an HHA meets conditions necessary for Medicare participation, but also can make transactions tricky. However, if the HHA in question has been participating with Medicare for less than 36-months, there are still legal options to make the purchase possible. A knowledgeable Texas Healthcare law attorney can still make the transaction a reality.

Purchasing an HHA is a complex process and evaluating all the factors that would make the acquisition​ beneficial for your business can be just as complicated. At The Law Offices of Alejandro Mora, PLLC, our firm is completely dedicated to legal matters in the healthcare sphere and Attorney Mora has time and time again helped navigate the transfer of HHA ownership to both the buyer and seller's benefit. He is ready to provide that same vigilant and dedicated quality of service to your business' potential HHA purchase.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help.

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