A Case for Non-Profit Hospice Organizations Doing Strategic Planning


Today’s Strategy Planning (SP) process is not your father’s SP process!  SP use to be a 3-to-5-year planning window.  This is obsolete in today’s environment.  Now, SP is all about creating annual rolling operating plans that are updated yearly and are truly helpful tools to assist hospice organizations navigate a complex environment and strengthen performance in the areas of quality, growth, and finance.

Referral Inquiry Case

The referral inquiry to admission process for hospice organizations is the lifeblood of their ability to serve more people, grow, and give the gift of hospice! How organizations convert referrals to hospice care is essential to steady and reliable growth. Those organizations that have a clear mission, vision, and set of values that drive their philosophy around access are usually most successful. Unfortunately, most hospices do not have a written policy and procedure for access in place to drive solid structures and processes that lead to superior results. In other words, we leave hospice appropriate patients behind because they presented us with an obstacle.

Why so long?

So many hospitals I work with have greater length of stay for those patients where a hospice referral was made. Here are some actual dates from a hospital in the southeast that mirrors other hospitals.

This hospital made 201 hospice referrals during a 12 month period. The LOS on these hospice referrals was 13.3 days, ouch! The hospital’s overall LOS is 4.9 days. Why the big difference? A few thoughts are below along with some possible measure on how to lower that LOS.

Building Your Billable Hours – Time for a New Plan?

Billable hours are the economic engine that drive Personal Care Home Health (Private Duty) companies. I know this well, because I actually own a Personal Care Home Health Company called Homewatch CareGivers, www.thehomecareexpert.com and my challenge over the years has been understanding how best to drive billable hours.

My initial efforts started with a traditional sales model. I had three sales people working the segments of Geriatric Case Managers, ElderLaw Attorneys, Assist Living Communities and the well. Maybe I didn’t have the right people and/or I didn’t do a good job with training, but the results were poor.

How Was Your First Quarter Growth?

The 1st QTR of 2015 flew by! I hate to say it, but planning for 2016 will be here soon. So how was your growth performance for the 1st Quarter? Did you meet your organization’s referral, admission and ADC growth goals? Does your organization even have growth goals? There are many that don’t- and without establishing goals, an organizations growth cannot be measured.

Strengthening the Core

How strong is your core? Having a strong core of Nurse Case Managers is key to growth and success. And having a consistent regular team of Case Managers is fundamental to providing quality services and a set of referral sources who trust your hospice. So how do you strengthen your core?