Nursing Home Business Operations
Operating a nursing home is a laudable business endeavor, but it is essential for any potential business owners to know what operating a nursing home entails, the fiduciary responsibilities these businesses entail, and proper practices for getting a nursing home up and running in an acceptable fashion.
Nursing home business operations typically hinge on providing stellar patient care that falls in line with all applicable government regulations at the state and federal levels. Operators must also know how to find and retain talented staff who can provide excellent patient experiences.Financial Issues and Insurance Concerns
Starting any business requires significant investment, and some business owners look for financing options wherever possible. The bottom line when it comes to financing is that is can be unavoidable in some situations, and nursing homes face many unique concerns compared to other care-oriented, service-based industries.
Effective financing can both assist a business owner with getting a nursing home running and handling unforeseen issues like disasters and lawsuits. Many American nursing homes are expanding their physical structures very rapidly to account for growing patient populations and a booming need for elder care across the country. Building a new wing on an existing nursing home requires careful financial consideration.
When it comes to insurance, business owners must ensure they meet all applicable state and federal rules when it comes to carrying specific types of coverage. Employers need to carry workers' compensation insurance in most states, and virtually every business owner purchases property insurance for their physical facilities. These are all crucial decisions for any burgeoning nursing home business.State and Federal Regulatory Compliance
The government recognizes the need for effective, humane, and reasonable elder care in the U.S. and upholds strict requirements for all nursing homes and assisted living facilities. These rules generally pertain to patient care, acceptable treatments for known medical issues, and proper procedures for specific medical events.
Ultimately, state and federal rules for nursing homes seek to encourage proper patient care at all levels of treatment in every organization and deterring inadequate patient care and staff negligence.
There are also state and federal regulations for proper nursing home staffing practices, care plans for residents, and prevention and treatment rules for various medical conditions such as malnutrition, dehydration, Alzheimer's disease, and bed sores. Nursing home business owners must ensure their staff meet these requirements and address inconsistencies or problems immediately to prevent potentially serious legal penalties from government oversight agencies.Staffing and Training Practices
Most states require that nursing home staff members complete various levels of official certification before they can administer patient care. The average nursing home runs with the assistance of various professionals including physicians, physicians' assistants, registered nurses, and certified nursing assistants.
Administrative staffers need to meet special qualifications, such as holding a relevant Bachelor's or Master's degree, familiarity with state and federal laws, and completing state-specific licensing requirements.
Ultimately, staff in a nursing home or assisted living facility must create individual care plans for every patient, monitor patients, treat them according to their individual medical concerns, and respond to new developments or patient crises as they arise. This requires thorough training policies and all nursing homes should develop responsible training practices for all new employees.
Additionally, nursing home business owners must ensure their facilities have the appropriate number of staff members in different positions for the number of patients at the facility. In 2014, the minimum requirements for nursing home staffing nearly doubled. Nursing home business owners have a tremendous amount of overhead to manage while consistently ensuring appropriate patient care at all levels of treatment.Full Employee Breakdown for a Nursing Home
The average nursing home will have at least one Director of Operations in charge of major business decisions and the overall running of the facility. The Director receives support from the Chief Nursing Officer who typically manages all aspects of patient care and nursing managers in charge of teams of nurses with various responsibilities.
Nursing homes also require support staff to manage correspondence with patients and their families, coordinate with outside medical providers, and manage other administrative aspects of the nursing home's operation like payroll and other staffing issues.Sustainability and Commitment to Positive Patient Experiences
The ultimate goal for any nursing home business owner is to create a business that offers stellar patient care, attractive amenities, and attentive, professional staff who can address individual medical issues. Developing a business plan for a nursing home requires many more considerations than building any other type of business, so potential nursing home owners should be well aware of these issues and prepare for an extensive and complex business-building process.
Effective marketing can help attract new residents and maintain profitability, and business owners should prepare to reinvest in their businesses on a regular basis. Upgrading facilities and amenities to account for emerging health care trends and new breakthrough treatments not only attracts more potential residents, but also helps ensure the nursing home will remain in operation well into the future.