How to Start a Nursing Agency from Home
The aging of our population and relatively smaller generations that followed has meant there are many more people who need care than their families can personally provide. This has generated massive demand for nursing homes and care for people in the home. This is in addition to an increased need for medical care overall while the supply of health care professionals has not kept up. One solution for families and healthcare facilities is to try to rely on nursing agencies to fill in the gap. Here are the steps to follow to start a nursing agency from home.
Determine a Business Model
You’ll need to determine your business model. Do you want to be a franchise of an existing nursing agency? You’ll receive instructions on how to run your business but strict rules to follow. You’ll benefit from name recognition but have to give up part of your profits or pay a periodic payment regardless of your profit margin.
You also need to determine your own niche. Will you be helping families find in-home healthcare? Or will you help medical facilities find nurses to fill in the gaps in their schedule? Will you be working with traveling nurses, whether they work on cruise ships or stay seasonally in resorts, or are you going to find permanent placements for nurses seeking work? Your business model tells you who your customers will be and what types of nurses you want to recruit. You may already be familiar with how to recruit different types of nurses if you’ve earned a healthcare MBA and moved into practice management.
Research Your Legal Requirements
The requirements for a nursing agency vary between jurisdictions. A business license is a minimum. The minimum amount of liability insurance you need is truly a minimum; you’ll want even more liability insurance in case you’re sued for the poor quality of care delivered by a nurse you hired without proper vetting.
Private pay patients are hard to find, but far more patients can use private medical insurance to pay for medical care. Start learning now how to accept this form of payment, though you may have to be in business for several months before health insurers will even put you in their database. If you’ve earned a healthcare MBA online, you’ll be familiar with how to deal with health insurance companies billing departments.
Start Recruiting at Both Ends
You have to recruit nurses in order to be able to offer them to your clients. You have to have clients in order to have assignments for your nurses. Once you meet the minimum legal requirements for running a nursing agency, start asking people who fit your customer profile if they need nursing help while advertising your service to medical professionals. For example, advertise in local free publications that are aimed at the elderly to find customers while advertising on discussion boards and in medical publications read by nurses. Post jobs on job boards for nurses and other staff you need while generating word of mouth marketing to drum up customers.
Don’t go all in finding clients when you don’t have the nursing staff to fill the need. Don’t recruit more nurses than you have clients for, though a hundred resumes received for an online job ad can easily be winnowed down to the two or three people you need. Don’t grow faster than you can handle, because you risk shorting either caregivers or patients (or both) if you cannot juggle it all. Quality of care matters more than speed of growth, since word of mouth marketing could give you all the selection you want if everyone is happy with you.
As you can see, starting your very own nursing agency from home is possible if you have the proper know-how and are willing to do the leg work. So, if you feel this is a career choice for you, we suggest that you speak with your local chamber of commerce so they guide you in your path.