With the January 1, 2020, deadline looming for the first phase of the Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) federal mandate, many home healthcare agencies are understandably focused on achieving compliance.

While compliance can sound daunting, for the agency with the right EVV solution, there can be benefits that go far beyond being compliant.

Once implemented, some EVV solutions can increase the efficiency and productivity of caregivers, improve an agency’s ability to manage its services staff, and facilitate more effective information sharing across the entire organization.

What is EVV?

The Electronic Visit Verification regulations are part of the 21st Century Cures Act enacted in 2016. EVV is a way for home healthcare providers billing Medicaid to prove that the visiting aid delivered the agreed upon services by confirming six key data elements: The patient’s name and location, the provider’s name, the date service was provided, the type of service rendered, and the beginning and end times for the patient care.

There are two key dates for the EVV mandate:

  • January 1, 2020 for personal care services
  • January 1, 2023 for home healthcare services

The goal of EVV is to ensure that home healthcare visits are taking place as being reported, that patients get the assigned care, and that Medicaid is accurately billed. With electronic verification and records, the government can better address Medicaid fraud, which is tens of billions of dollars annually.

Going beyond the basics

While a basic EVV solution will help your healthcare agency meet the mandate’s requirements, comprehensive care delivery management solutions help agencies do so much more than meet simple proof-of-visit requirements. They offer, for instance:

  • Data security.
  • Real time position monitoring of nurses, emergency vehicles, and equipment during working hours.
  • Reduced paperwork and related expenses
  • Accelerated data reception by storing protected health information digitally.
  • Time savings by allowing home health care workers to register their timeclock punches from handset devices.
  • More efficient staff scheduling to improve patient visit response times.

There are other benefits as well. With a more sophisticated EVV solution, it is easy to share care and service plans, care history, team information, and communications among team members. You can assemble a comprehensive point-of-care visit documentation, including all of the tasks completed, notes, any required forms, as well as calculations, assessments, and photos.

With a complete care delivery management solution in place, an agency’s entire team can benefit from a tool that is configurable and customizable to each agency’s particular needs. Paper documentation can be all but eliminated, productivity and efficiency go up, and costs come down compared with the use of multiple software products.

A sophisticated solution

A broad-reaching and sophisticated Electronic Visit Verification solution can scale to meet the needs of any home healthcare provider and consists of two key elements, a workforce management system and a mobile forms tool.

The workforce management aspects are designed to boost employee productivity and make sure that resources are at the right place at the right time. It encompasses scheduling, forecasting, skills management, timekeeping and attendance, and employee empowerment tools.

Time, date, and location are automatically captured and information is available in real time to management via a centralized, easy-to-use web-based portal. Individuals’ locations can be monitored so that schedules can be optimized, and appointments monitored for added safety. Work order information can be sent easily to health care workers mobile devices, with group messaging options available.

With the mobile forms capability, data can be captured electronically, immediately uploaded, and available to management. Mobile forms enhance the accuracy of records, allow employees to spend less time on filling out forms, and eliminate paper. Forms can be readily shared across groups, and photos can be easily appended to any form.

Among the benefits:

  • Elimination of overbilling mistakes by verifying and logging the services rendered.
  • Reducing insurance fraud by eliminating the possibility of false invoices and demonstrating that caregivers visited the appropriate site at the correct time.
  • Enhanced management and safety by knowing at all times where a caregiver is, who they are with, and what is taking place.
  • Maintaining accurate visit times by digitally logging caregivers’ trips through time-stamped verification of each visit.

As agencies deal with a complex web of employees, payers, clients, and others, their EVV solution can do so much more than meet the mandate’s requirements. It can offer a way to improve care and client outcomes while helping caregivers accurately and thoroughly document visits.