Considering joining the growing home care industry? We don’t blame you. Currently, the home care providers market is worth $120 billion in the U.S. That number is only expected to grow as an aging population looks to live in their homes as long as possible.
Federal, state, and local governments heavily regulate the industry. The regulations are to protect you and your patients. So, when starting a home health care business, one of the first things to do is get a home health care license. Here’s a look at the steps involved in how to get a home health care business license.
1. Choose Between Medical vs. Non-Medical
The type of services you provide could change the type of license you need and how you get it. For example, to offer medical services like medication administration, you’ll need to hire medical professionals before you begin the process of licensing. However, this comes with more liability for your business.
You could stick to non-medical services and provide companionship or other daily activity assistance. Some states will still require skilled medical professionals to be hired to meet the requirements for a license for non-medical home care agencies.
2. Find Out Your State Requirements
Whether you’re looking to offer medical services or operate as a non-medical home care provider, there are several steps to take before accepting clients. First, research what your state requires. Not all states require licenses for home care. CareAcademy finds three that don’t: Iowa, Massachusetts, and Michigan You can typically find these requirements on the Secretary of State’s website.
Depending on your state’s requirements, you’ll need to attend training, and state officials or an accrediting body will perform inspections. The process of getting your business license can take three to 18 months, depending on your state. Some states will provide you with a provisional license during the process. States with an increase in applications for home care licenses might take longer.
There are 18 states that require an inspection visit before receiving a provisional license for non-medical home care or home health care companies. Then, after that first inspection, follow-up inspections occur every so many years, again depending on the state.
More than a dozen states require home health care agencies to file a Certificate of Need before applying for a business license. This certificate helps state authorities monitor the supply of providers in the health care market. It evaluates the local demand before allowing a new facility or agency to open. Apply for your certificate of need first, before your license, just in case you need to reconsider your territory.
A benefit to owning an A Place At Home franchise is our market research. We know what areas and territories a home care agency can thrive in. All our base franchise unit territories have 40,000 qualified senior residents.
3. Create a Business Plan
For some license registrations, you’ll include a business plan. Generally, it’s good to have one completed before you finalize your business setup anyway. Your business plan will outline core business activities and how you plan to achieve goals. These documents include an executive summary, products, and services offered, a market analysis, marketing strategy, financial planning, financial projections, and a budget.
4. Register Your Business With the State
Before you move on to getting your license for your non-medical home care agency, register with your state through the Secretary of State and the State Department of Revenue Services. Typically, this step is as easy as filing your business name with the state and local governments.
5. Set Up an Office
Secure an office space for your business. You’ll need locked cabinets to store client and company records. In addition, most license applications will require you to include a copy of your lease.
Only a small executive suite is necessary when you become an A Place At Home franchise owner. It allows you to perform private, professional interviews with your care staff members.
6. Follow State Training Requirements
Study the mandated training for you and your employees. The requirements vary by state. Ensure it’s all completed fully before applying for a home health care license. Most states require everyone have CPR/AED training, even if you’re a non-medical home care agency. Caregivers have specific training requirements to follow.
7. Apply For Your Home Health Care License
Finally! Once you’ve completed all the previous steps, you have made it to the end of our guide on how to get your home health care business license. You can submit your license application. Fill out all the necessary forms and provide the proper materials to your state to receive your licensing.
FAQs on How to Get a Home Health Care Business License
Still have questions after reading through the guide? Here are some frequently asked questions surrounding the licensure process:
- How much will it cost?
Like most other things, this varies by state. Fees can either be a flat rate or based on the number of employees. For example, a Texas home and community support services agency license costs $2,625.
- How often do I have to renew?
This is another state-by-state regulation, but it can also depend on how much you want to pay to extend your license. States typically require a renewal annually or every two or three years. The more you pay at one time, the longer the license period is.
- Do I still apply for a license if I buy into a franchise?
While you’re paying to join a trusted brand, you still have to follow the rules and regulations of your state for home care agencies. So, yes, you still have to go through the steps of how to get a home health care business license and pay for it, even when you’re affiliated with a franchise system.
Let A Place At Home Guide You Through the Process
Instead of worrying about navigating how to get a home health care business license by yourself, let us help you at A Place At Home. By becoming an owner with us, you’ll receive not only licensure guidance but also a step-by-step process on how to start a home health agency. You’ll follow our five-step CARE track to gain the tools you’ll need for success. You can capitalize on multiple revenue streams — all while being backed by a reputable national brand that people recognize. Those opportunities include care coordination, finding senior living alternatives, and staffing services.
Don’t sweat the small steps. Let A Place At Home lead you to open your own home care agency. Submit a franchise form to get started.