May 26, 2020

A Discussion with Michigan HomeCare & Hospice Association President & CEO Barry Cargill about the COVID-19 Crisis

As the COVID-19 outbreak continues, the home health community is working aggressively to protect patients, front-line home health workers, and the communities we serve. As a community of highly skilled professionals caring for vulnerable populations with disabilities and multiple chronic conditions, home healthcare agencies are uniquely qualified to treat individuals diagnosed with COVID-19. And with more Americans becoming vulnerable to contracting COVID-19, home health represents a safe and available care setting for at-risk populations.

The Partnership recently spoke with Barry Cargill, President and CEO of the Michigan HomeCare & Hospice Association, about how home health providers in his state are responding during this public health crisis:

We asked Barry the following questions:

  • What are your overall observations about how the COVID-19 crisis has impacted home health patients and providers in Michigan? (0:33)
  • Some of the patients most at risk of COVID-19 transmission, such as older Medicare beneficiaries and those with multiple chronic conditions, are also the most in need of home health. How are home health agencies in your state reaching patients right now? (2:23)
  • I’ve seen some stories on how home health can provide relief to hospitals who are experiencing a rapid influx of patients. Have you seen examples of this in your state? (5:20)
  • What are some of the biggest barriers or issues frontline home health and hospice providers are reporting? (6:45)
  • What support can Congress and the Administration offer to home health providers? (8:51)
  • Can you share an example of a patient your team has been able to help during this time? (10:40)
  • Anything we haven’t covered that you’d like to add today? (12:21)

While Congress and CMS have taken significant steps to provide regulatory relief to enable expanded access to home health and ensure patient safety, more must be done to fully unleash home health in the fight against COVID-19. Send an email now asking your policymakers to optimize the use of this skilled care during the pandemic.