Hospice Competency Program
Ensure Compliance with an Outstanding Hospice Competency Program
ComplianceManagement
Having an effective hospice competency program will reduce agency risk and increase the quality of patient care, as your staff becomes competent with policies, procedures, and federal and state accreditation regulations. When patients and families experience skilled care from properly trained staff, they experience improved outcomes and coordination of care.

Ensure Compliance with an Outstanding Hospice Competency Program

A hospice competency program is required under the State Operations Manual L663 / 418.100(g)(3). Your program must assess the skills and competencies of anyone who is furnishing care, including volunteers. Sharon Litwin’s recent webinar explains best practices as well as what to include in your competency program. With that, let’s dive in!

Training must be an ongoing process beginning with new hires. Additional training would be required any time there is a new task, procedure, process, law, or regulation. Even if there are no new tasks, laws, or regulations, your staff must receive annual training. Any training must be performed by someone competent in that area of expertise. You may need to hire someone if there is a new regulation or law.

Because you are training staff on key expectations throughout the year, it is important to switch up how they receive their assessments. You could give written and oral tests, interviews, documentation reviews, direct observations, or even skills labs. By giving a variety of assessments you can ensure compliance by testing them in a manner that suits their learning abilities. 

Although having a competency program is required, the documentation standards are up to the agency. A common deficiency often found during an audit is below-average training standards. In addition, the documentation is only a handout or a five-question quiz that does not show competency. You want your documentation to be robust, especially if it shows a deficiency that was improved through training.

Implementing and documenting your competency program is not only a must, it is a requirement. Learn everything from documentation requirements to staff members to include in your assessments. Get it all from Sharon’s recent webinar, Develop an Effective Hospice Competency Program.

This webinar also comes with a tracking document that can be used for several years to showcase deficiencies, improvements, and additions. Use code COMPETENCYPROGRAM at checkout for 10% off this webinar! This coupon is valid through December 2022.

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