Home healthcare workers are truly road warriors. A 2015 study by the Foundation for Hospice and Homecare reported that home healthcare aid givers drove 7.88 billion miles in 2013 to visit more than 718 million patients. To put that in perspective, “Pluto is 4.67 billion miles away and it took 9 years to travel there, while home care traveled that far in just 7 months,” according to the study.
That’s a lot of miles to reimburse. That’s also a lot of opportunity for inaccurate mileage reporting, so we’ve come up with this guide for how to track home healthcare mileage more accurately.
Home Healthcare Mileage Tracking & REimbursement
Step 1: Train employees to avoid estimation.
Estimation can lead to over-reimbursement, which can be a major source of leakage for your budget. Instead, teach employees to keep track of their mileage down to the tenth of a mile. Even estimating a half mile up a few times can result in hundreds or thousands of dollars in the course of a year.
Step 2: Get the right mileage reimbursement tools.
You can begin training employees by providing them with the right tools for more accurate tracking. Timesheet and expense reporting software that comes integrated with Google Maps makes it easy for employees to simply enter a start address and a stop address or add several addresses once. This calculates mileage to a tenth of a mile to ensure that mileage is accurate.
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Step 3: Deduct commute mileage.
Unless it’s under specific circumstances, it’s not necessary to calculate commute mileage, which are the miles that an employee would regularly travel from their home address to their regular work location. This means that employees who travel from home to the main office don’t qualify for reimbursement of their regular travel from home to work. This won’t apply to many home healthcare workers since they usually travel directly to a patient’s home and visits to the office occur less often. However, automated software can automatically deduct this mileage if it is entered into the system, which can be helpful for calculating reimbursements more accurately.
Step 4: Avoid using third-party tracking hardware.
There’s no need for additional hardware when the software can do the work. Additional hardware also need maintenance and it can be costly to implement into every employee’s car. The most efficient way to track mileage is to use software with point-to-point calculations rather than hardware that tracks manually.
Step 5: Choose time and expense mileage reimbursement for home healthcare that’s HIPAA compliant.
A software company that’s gone above and beyond to earn HIPAA compliance is one that understands the needs of its healthcare customers. This is by no means a requirement for time and expense providers, so one that does shows that it understands the importance of privacy and compliance.
Taking these steps will assist home healthcare organizations in reducing the costs of their mileage reimbursement. The key is to track home healthcare mileage more accurately to prevent over-reimbursement.
Learn more about how DATABASICS Time & Expense for Home Healthcare™ can help your organization.
For more information on the DATABASICS Time & Expense solutions, contact us, or call (800) 599-0434.
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