Demand for home health care services is growing in Wyoming. More people want to “age in place” after retirement, and those managing chronic illnesses and living with disabilities also want to live comfortably and safely in their own homes. Starting a home health agency could help you fill this need in your community.
Getting a home health care license is just one step towards starting a care agency from home or in a dedicated office space. This article covers the requirements for starting a home health care agency in Wyoming, as well as protecting and growing your home care business.
You must be licensed to start a home health agency in Wyoming. However, it may be helpful to do some general small business admin first.
The license application provided by the Wyoming Department of Health requires basic information about your agency for approval. Tackling some key steps could make it faster and easier to complete and submit your application.
Before applying, you may want to:
- Research your local market – What home health services are needed in your area? Who is already providing these services (your competition) and what do they charge? How do they advertise their business and services?
- Write a business plan – Create a “roadmap” for starting and running your home health agency. You may want to include key information, like the services you’ll provide, required administrators and staff, your business goals, marketing strategy, proposed budgets and revenue forecasts.
- Choose a business structure – You can choose from several business structures in Wyoming, including sole proprietorship, Limited Liability Company (LLC), or general partnership.
- Establish your business – You may need a general business license and certain permits to start a home health agency in Wyoming. The Wyoming Secretary of State website can help you determine what may be required for your business.
- Set up your business finances – You will need an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS to file state and federal business taxes. A separate bank account for your business may be desirable or required (depending on your chosen business structure).
Applying for a Wyoming State Home Health Agency License
A completed application is required by the Wyoming Department of Health to get a home health care license. For your application you will need to:
- Pay the required licensing fee
- Purchase a surety bond of at least $2,500
- Attach an organizational chart
- Provide your administrator’s and supervising nurse’s qualifications
- Submit relevant policies and procedures (including conducting background checks, providing Wyoming-approved home health aide training, and complaints handling)
Protecting Your Agency
Business insurance is not a requirement for getting a home health care license in Wyoming. However, Workers’ Compensation is necessary for most businesses with employees.
Though most types of insurance are optional, you may still want to consider covering your home health agency. Without insurance coverage, the cost of unplanned expenses could hit your accounts hard. In a worst-case scenario, you may even lose your agency to bankruptcy.
When you start a private home care business, you might want to consider buying:
General Liability insurance
Also referred to as Commercial General Liability (CGL) or “slip and fall coverage”, this insurance can protect your business against bodily injury or property damage lawsuits from outside parties.
Your staff will likely interact with health professionals, suppliers, delivery people and other members of the public daily. This makes General Liability coverage essential for many home health agencies.
Professional Liability insurance
A Professional Liability insurance policy (also known as Errors and Omissions or E&O insurance) is an essential policy that protects you and your company in case of a lawsuit due to alleged professional wrongdoing.
Unfortunately, negligence claims are common in the home health care industry. Professional Liability insurance may be an important coverage type for managing the costs of these claims and lawsuits.
Business Owner’s Policy
A Business Owner’s Policy (BOP) is a combination of policies, combining covers such as General Liability insurance and business personal property coverage, to help protect small businesses from costly interruptions to service.
Staffing Your Agency
Home health agencies that are Medicare-certified must hire qualified home health aides. As an agency, you can provide a Wyoming-approved home health aide training program for successful hires or require applicants to already have their certification.
Regardless of how you run your business, home health aide certifications in Wyoming must include:
- Completion of a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) program – 75 hours of instruction, with at least 16 hours in a clinical setting
- Completion of an approved home health aide training course – 16 hours
- Passing a competency exam
Grow Your Home Care Business
It doesn’t matter if you start your care agency from home or an office space, clients are necessary to keep your business running and help it grow. But how do you find them?
Marketing is the art and science of promoting a business. Most home health agencies use a combination of methods to brand and advertise themselves to potential patients. You might consider techniques such as:
- Referrals – Word-of-mouth recommendations from existing patients, family, friends, or health care professionals. This can be an effective way to grow a home care business, especially if you focus on providing excellent service.
- Advertising – Running ads online, TV, radio, in local publications, or in newspapers. Traditional media may be expensive, but online and social media advertising could be effective and help stretch your budget.
- Printed materials – Flyers, brochures, posters, and banners. With permission, you could leave these and other printed materials in doctor’s waiting rooms, senior communities or with hobby organizations.
- Online presence – Website, social media, directory listings, and online reviews. Building your online presence could help you find younger patients or the family of aging people in need of your services.
- In-person events – Attending local events, like community festivals or farmer’s markets, could be a great way to connect with people face-to-face.
BizInsure understands Wyoming’s home health agencies
Starting a home health agency in Wyoming takes time and effort. Insurance can help protect what your building is, so you can focus on growing your home care business.
As with any insurance, coverage will be subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions contained in the policy wording. The information contained on this guide is general only and should not be relied upon as advice. The number of quotes provided varies between products, occupations and other underwriting factors determined by the insurers.
© Copyright 2023 BizInsure LLC, 2015 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED BizInsure LLC; CA DBA: Simple, Smart, BizInsure Insurance Agency LLC; NY DBA: BizInsure Services LLC; NH DBA: Simple, Smart, BizInsure Insurance Agency; PA DBA: BizInsure Services LLC. 2950 Buskirk Ave Suite 300, Walnut Creek CA 94597. License #0H81929