With everything you try to keep track of in your agency, it seems like survey comes around quicker than every 3 years. It is a stressful time to prepare and make sure everything is being done properly. If you find yourself low on staff and short on time, then what do you need to focus on to make sure you are ready? Let’s consider what a mock survey can do to prevent a repeat visit and citations you don’t want or need.
Tips Prior To Survey:
There are some things you can do to make sure you are survey ready. Let’s look at some of them.
- Develop a checklist: Whether you are a one office business or have multiple branches, develop checklists of common items you know the surveyor will be looking to evaluate. Things like supply closets with expired items and medication refrigerators should never get cited. You should have check-offs and someone responsible to evaluate whether the routine checks have been completed. This should be an ongoing so there is not an issue.
- Dig Into Clinical Charts: Have your CQI coordinator or other designated employee dive deep into clinical compliance and documentation. This shouldn’t be someone aware of each of the patients and their respective situation. You want an objective review of the documentation. Have someone who is non-clinical pick the charts to be reviewed.
- Do Random Car Checks: You should have random checks of the clinical staff to make make sure employee cars maintain clean and dirty areas appropriately and bags don’t have supplies that are expired. Make sure the sharps containers they carry are not overfilled. Randomly have clinical staff show you the process of pulling things out of the nursing bag and cleaning supplies once they are used. We see a lot of infection control citations from clinical staff. Here is the thing to consider: many newer clinical staff may not completely understand the process and how things need to be done. Do not assume clinicians new to home health/hospice or those who come from another agency know the proper procedure. This is a common error.
- Consider Mock Surveys: If you are a long established agency with enough clinical staff, then you may develop your own checklist that encompasses all the required elements including policy and procedures. Otherwise, consider the investment in a mock survey from outside consulting. Yes, there is obviously expense involved with this process, but it comes with many advantages. First, you have the objectivity that doesn’t exist with your own staff. Second, the senior level consultant has decades of experiences with different surveyors and accrediting bodies to understand and make sure you are ready for what the surveyor expects. Third, you will receive the checklist items in order to prepare and remedy anything found during your mock survey. Fourth, the mock surveyor can help you with compliance issues and how to fix them operationally.
Kenyon Homecare Consulting Can Help:
At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have senior consultants throughout the country to help agencies achieve their quality and financial goals. We can help you complete the mock survey you need to pass your real one when the time comes. Call us today at 206-721-5091 or contact us online to see how we can help you make the whole survey process more successful and less stressful.