Are you wondering how to expand a non medical home care agency to Rhode Island? If YES, here is everything you need to know about expanding to Rhode Island in 2022. According to reports, Rhode Island’s Department of Human Services regards its aging population as a priceless and somewhat vulnerable state asset.

With about 31 percent of the population at least 55 years old and the nation’s highest proportion of residents at least 85 years old, the Office of Healthy Aging is always eager to implement innovative and comprehensive strategies for Rhode Island residents to age healthy, happily, and safely in their community and homes.

The 2023 Strategic Plan infuses choice, connection, equity, safety, and performance to manage senior care resources. Also note that this program educates aging residents on available in-home resources so they can make very satisfactory decisions about their health care needs. Owing to that, individuals who need assistance with daily tasks as they age may want to employ a nonmedical home care agency to provide these services.

According to reports, the cost of non-medical home care in Rhode Island is $5,148 monthly, which is $858 higher than the national average of $4,290. This cost is also higher than neighboring Connecticut and New York. Non-medical home care in Rhode Island is also seen to be lower than costs in Vermont, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire.

In addition, note that assisted living is only slightly higher than nonmedical home care in Rhode Island at $5,199. Skilled nursing care for seniors with medical conditions that need extensive and detailed 27/7 medical care and supervision is the most costly, in-state and nationally, at $9,961 in Rhode Island. Rhode Island’s largest cities are known to be in the same region as Providence – it’s capital city –so they will likely have similar nonmedical home care costs – with the state average of $5,148 for monthly in-home care.

Steps to Expand a Non Medical Home Care Agency to Rhode Island

Unlike most states in the United States, Rhode Island mandates certain requirements for individuals looking to formally start a non medical home care agency in the State. Here are steps you are expected to take to expand your business into the state.

  1. Register Your Business Name

To expand your non medical home care agency to Rhode Island, you will be expected to register your business name. A common issue with registering a non medical home care business and getting it licensed is the choice in name.

Note that if you use words that relate to medical terminology, it will surely affect your ability to market your business and also give consumers the wrong opinion about the services you can offer. Note that Transparency is the best marketing strategy for your non medical home care business. Ensure to be clear on what you are trying to convey to the consumer.

  1. Deciding On How You Want To Be Taxed (Inc vs. LLC)

In the State of Rhode Island, choosing a suitable option for your nonmedical home care business taxation is a major decision. Note that people tend to work with consulting firms, attorneys, or accountants to find the most suitable systems for their non medical home care business.

Have it in mind that the way you register your nonmedical home care business will also determine filing fees and other annual costs that will be required to make sure your nonmedical home care business stays in good standing.

  1. Create A Business Plan And Choose A Suitable Location

Have it in mind that putting together a detailed path for your business will ensure you reach your business goals. Otherwise, it may turn into a nightmare. Take your time to research the market and analyze if there is a need for your type of nonmedical home care business. However, note there are numerous barriers to entry.

The primary obstacle is submitting a Certificate of Need (CON) determination application with a non-refundable fee of $500 + 0.25 percent of Capital Cost to Rhode Island Department of Health. Have it in mind that this does not guarantee they will approve you and if the specific area you are trying to start an agency in is flooded with other home care agencies, then they will not approve your request.

In addition, pending the approval of the CON, the owners of the agency are expected to pass a background check. Also, note there are fees associated with the formation of the Agency and licensing. In addition, your business will also be expected to have enough capital to get the business started and managed well for at least 12 months.

  1. Create Your Non Medical Home Care Business

Secretary of State Formation, Statement of Information, Employer Identification Number, State Tax ID, and a National Provider Identification number will all be very necessary to get your non medical home care business started in the State. Also, note that you will need a tangible address to start the agency (P.O. Boxes are not acceptable).

  1. Insure Your Non Medical Home Care Business

Have it in mind that the State of Rhode Island mandates the following for home care licensure in Rhode Island:

  • General Liability Insurance
  • Professional Liability Insurance
  • Workman’s Compensation
  1. Obtain A Home Care License From Rhode Island Department Of Health

To start your non medical home care agency, you will be expected to get an approved Certificate of Need Application and then apply for a home care license in Rhode Island. Have it in mind that this license will require an application to be put together and submitted to the Rhode Island Department of Health with a fee of $650.

In addition, a Nurse Supervisor is expected to oversee the caregivers and health Aides. Rhode Island also mandates an Administrator and Alternately qualified individual to manage the non medical home care agency. After all, information is submitted and verified the state then requires a pre-opening survey of the agency will take place.

  1. Seek Local Business Licensure And Prepare To Open Your Home Care Business 

Have it in mind that the county or township where you intend to expand your business to may have specific requirements that need to be met with an application for a local license to conduct business in that area. In addition, ensure you get a suitable location and properly set the office before the time of survey. Also, make sure that all the proper licenses are in a visible area

  1. Hire Staff And Set Up Payroll

Don’t forget that your non medical home care business will need staff to open its doors and in the case of Rhode Island the key staff/managers are expected to be noted in the initial application process. Note that hiring the staff and making sure they get paid is a very crucial part of starting your non medical home care business.

However, this process can be carried out by the home care business owners or a professional equipped to handle these situations. The state of Rhode Island has very specific laws associated with being an employer. Have it in mind that this can make or break the agency if they do not follow the letter of the law.

Conclusion

According to reports, over 400,000 residents of the state are 50 and older. Although this might seem like a small number, it more or less represents nearly 40 percent of the state’s total population. And the median age in Rhode Island is 40 years old, which is more than a year-and-a-half older than the overall U.S. median age. Owing to that, expanding your non medical home care agency to Rhode Island should be a decision to be considered extensively.

Joy Nwokoro