Skip to content

2024 Home Health Trends – Diversification of Services at the Forefront

Exploring the Trends of Service Diversification and Community Integration in Home-Based Care


home health care trends

February 8, 2024 – One of the most notable trends on the horizon for the home health and home care industries is diversification as providers expand the range of services offered and broaden the providers involved in delivering these services. The change reflects a deeper understanding of the multifaceted needs of patients receiving care at home and the recognition that a one-size-fits-all approach is no longer sufficient.  This trend is not just a response to changing demographics but also a strategic adjustment to the increasingly complex and varied demands of patients and their families. 

In this blog, we will explore what diversification in home health and home care entails, why it is becoming essential, and how it will impact both providers and consumers. As we navigate through these changes, it’s crucial to understand how diversification in home health and home care will influence the quality, accessibility, and effectiveness of home health care and home care services in 2024 and beyond.

Value-Based Payments Driving Service Diversification

One of the biggest trends that we are going to see in the home care and home health industry in 2024 is diversification of services. With the increased demand for home-based services, agencies are going to see tremendous growth opportunities if they can diversify their services. 

Part of this is going to be driven by the increasing shift to value-based care. Home health and the home care industry is increasingly shifting towards a value-based care model. The Home Health VBP Model was expanded nationwide in 2023 and encompasses care for Medicare patients. However, it is important to note that Medicare only covers the first 100 days of service in a 12-month period for those without supplemental or secondary insurance, or that have not purchased a Medicare Advantage plan. With the shifting focus on keeping people at home through home health and home care initiatives, we may continue to see a shift towards consumers purchasing Medicare Advantage plans to ensure coverage.

With this influx of demand, we might see large Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) and Medicare Advantage (M.A.) plans pushing home health and home care agencies to diversify their services to meet more comprehensive patient needs. And providers looking to hedge against reimbursement and revenue risks have plenty of options to diversify service offerings and revenue sources. 

Agencies can expand services to include Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) for Medicaid and Medicaid Waiver programs. They can offer private duty nursing services that are funded by Medicaid, Medicaid Waiver, or Private Insurance companies. There are also Outpatient Therapy (Medicare Part B) Services that can be provided at patients’ homes, which agency therapists are already trained to do. The good news is that home health agencies can expand these services and diversify payers with their existing infrastructure and the skill sets that they already possess. They just need to reorient marketing and ensure employees are properly trained for the shift. 

Another way that home health and home care agencies are diversifying is by offering a more holistic approach to care. The integration of whole-person care into home health services is something that we will continue to see in 2024 and beyond. Physicians and healthcare providers are increasingly offering comprehensive care plans that include mental health services and other specialized care directly in the home. This approach ensures that patients receive a continuum of care that addresses all aspects of their health, leading to better outcomes and higher patient satisfaction.

It’s important to note that this diversification is not merely about expanding the range of services but aligning them with the goals of enhancing patient outcomes and reducing overall healthcare costs. By diversifying services and providing services like Certified Home Health, Non-Medical Personal Care, Private Duty Nursing, Therapy at Home, Pediatric Care, Mental Health, and more, agencies can protect themselves against the impact of reimbursement cuts while taking advantage of existing skill sets. And, if proper training and infrastructure is in place to provide quality care, this is also a win for consumers. Individuals will be able to receive a full continuum of care from a single agency, which eliminates the need for shopping around and trying to work through various agencies. By simplifying the process, we can improve the care coordination and the accessibility of care for our aging population and the chronically ill. 

The Continuation of Hospital at Home Programs

As providers look to diversify and expand, we also expect to see the Hospital at Home model gain further traction in 2024. These programs involve providing hospital-level care in a patient’s home, supported by advanced technology, skilled nursing, and remote monitoring. Why does this model work? Studies show that the comfort and familiarity of one’s own home can potentially expedite recovery, reduce the chances of hospital-related complications, and significantly enhance patient satisfaction.

The success of the Hospital at Home model hinges on the integration of technology and the availability of skilled healthcare professionals. It is a natural next step for home health and home care agencies that have telehealth platforms. By investing in remote patient monitoring tools, mobile health applications, and skilled nurses, they can provide continuous and effective care. 

In recent years, we’ve seen many home health agencies rolling out their own Hospital at Home programs. Many suggest that they can provide these services for significantly less than hospitals by leveraging existing infrastructure, which means delivering high-quality care while saving costs. However, the model also presents challenges, such as ensuring the reliability of technology, managing emergency situations, and coordinating with traditional healthcare facilities. Addressing these challenges is crucial for the successful implementation and scaling of Hospital at Home programs in 2024.

Expanding Community Partnerships in Home Care

In 2024, we also expect to see home care agencies strengthening community partnerships to provide more comprehensive and seamless care. This involves building robust networks with various local entities, including mental health clinics, social service organizations, and community groups. These partnerships are essential for addressing the full spectrum of a patient’s needs, which often extend beyond medical care to encompass emotional, social, and environmental factors.

One of the primary areas of focus we will see is linking home care patients with community-based mental health providers. By collaborating with mental health professionals, home care agencies can ensure that their patients receive timely and appropriate support for mental health issues. This is particularly important given the rising prevalence of mental health concerns among the elderly and chronically ill. Such partnerships not only improve access to mental health services but also ensure that care is coordinated and consistent across providers.

To make this a success for consumers as well, community partnerships will need to involve active engagement and education initiatives. Home care and home health agencies need to work with community organizations to conduct workshops, health fairs, and awareness campaigns. These activities not only help in educating the community about available services but also enable agencies to understand the unique needs and challenges of the populations they serve. This is one way that we could see more value-based payments creep into home health and home care. Payers can incentivize providers to provide education to consumers about the different services offered. For home health, payers under the Expanded HHVBP model can also benefit from patients feeling more satisfied with their overall care. This is reported in the HHCAHPS survey that is used in part to generate performance scores for agencies and directly correlates to their bottom line. 

Advocates Perspective

In 2024, we expect to see many changes in the home care and home health industry, including the diversification of services and payers and a deeper integration with community resources. The trends reflect a broader shift towards a more holistic, patient-centered approach to care. Home health and home care agencies can use their existing infrastructure and with a little investment, expand to new services and payers. This not only enables them to grow, but also protects them against reimbursement cuts. What does this mean for consumers? It can be a good thing if expansion is done with thoughtful planning and the engagement of all stakeholders. Consumers being able to receive a larger continuum of care and expanded services through a single provider can help streamline accessibility of care and ensure that individuals are able to get the services they need from the comfort of their own home.


Share This Blog!

Get even more insights on Linkedin & Twitter

Subscribe here to receive the blogs straight to your inbox

About the Author

Fady Sahhar brings over 30 years of senior management experience working with major multinational companies including Sara Lee, Mobil Oil, Tenneco Packaging, Pactiv, Progressive Insurance, Transitions Optical, PPG Industries and Essilor (France).

His corporate responsibilities included new product development, strategic planning, marketing management, and global sales. He has developed a number of global communications networks, launched products in over 45 countries, and managed a number of branded patented products.

mandy sahhar

About the Co-Author

Mandy Sahhar provides experience in digital marketing, event management, and business development. Her background has allowed her to get in on the ground floor of marketing efforts including website design, content marketing, and trade show planning. Through her modern approach, she focuses on bringing businesses into the new digital age of marketing through unique approaches and focused content creation. With a passion for communications, she can bring a fresh perspective to an ever-changing industry. Mandy has an MBA with a marketing concentration from Canisius College.