The purpose of this study was to understand staffing challenges faced by home care (including home health) agencies due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the policies and practices put into place by the federal government, state governments, and home care agencies themselves to mitigate these challenges. This study included a review of federal and state policy changes enacted in reaction to the pandemic from March through December 2020, a review of home care agency practices described in media reports, peer-reviewed literature, and gray literature focused on responses to workforce challenges encountered during the pandemic, and interviews with a variety of stakeholders. Some of the challenges encountered were entirely new and resulted directly from the pandemic. In other cases, the pandemic worsened long-standing challenges in the industry. States and the federal government addressed some of these issues through changes to policies, regulations, and guidance. Home care agencies also responded with changes to their own policies and practices.
COVID-19 Exacerbated long-standing challenges for the home care workforce