Category: Blog

Paradigm Announces Acquisition of HomeCare Connect

Acquisition extends Paradigm’s accountable specialty care management model into the home health market to deliver better outcomes for catastrophic and complex cases

WALNUT CREEK, CA — December 8, 2021 — Paradigm, the industry leader in solving catastrophic and complex health care challenges and improving lives, today announced it has acquired HomeCare Connect, a leading specialty network focused on home health, durable medical equipment (DME), and related services, with specific expertise in servicing catastrophic and complex cases. This acquisition will broaden Paradigm’s specialty network and clinical solution sets and extend Paradigm’s accountable care management model into the home.

The acquisition of HomeCare Connect adds a highly complementary set of offerings to Paradigm’s suite of products and is a logical extension into the growing home health market. In addition to their core home care and DME solutions, HomeCare Connect offers related services, including post-acute care, home modifications, prosthetics, and IV therapy. These additional solutions will pave the way for future product innovations as Paradigm expands its clinical solutions, specialty networks, and payment integrity offerings.

“New technologies, aging demographics, and infectious disease-related risks are key factors driving increased demand and new opportunities. By extending our offerings into the home health market, Paradigm can support this critical aspect of the recovery journey by providing continuity of high-quality, closely managed care to drive better outcomes for the injured workers we serve,” said John Watts, CEO, Paradigm. “HomeCare Connect’s experience and values strongly align with our clinical focus and DNA in delivering better outcomes, building high-value networks, and creating accountability for results. We value the rare and unique expertise HomeCare Connect will bring to our enterprise with their talented team, breadth of technology and insights, and stellar reputation.”

In addition to an expanded product set, the acquisition brings a clinically focused and highly talented team of workers’ compensation and home health professionals to Paradigm. The employees of HomeCare Connect, as part of the Paradigm family, will integrate within Paradigm’s product-focused organization and shared services teams.

“Paradigm prides itself on the high-value networks that we have carefully built as resources to best serve injured workers and their families,” said Chris Pricco, Chief Networks & Operations Officer. “By also offering home health, DME, post-acute care, prosthetics, IV therapy, and home modifications, we can extend Paradigm’s accountable specialty care management model into the home, which is paired seamlessly with our industry-leading post-acute care and payment integrity solutions.”

Founded in 2011 by sisters Teresa Williams, Vonesa Wenzel, and Cindy Hailey, HomeCare Connect is clinically driven, with a stringent provider selection and credentialing process to become a part of their 25,000+ home health, DME, and post-acute care provider networks. In addition to their high regard within the workers’ compensation industry, HomeCare Connect has also been recognized on the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies list for the past three consecutive years, a testament to their strong leadership and the entire team, as well as the growing demand for the services they provide.

“Paradigm understands how critical the move to the home is in order to provide the best possible care for injured workers. The Paradigm team and their solutions are highly complementary to the decades of workers’ compensation and home health care experience and innovative offerings that are the foundation of our business,” said Vonesa Wenzel, co-founder and Managing Partner, HomeCare Connect. “We have collaborated well together on complex cases and look forward to working even more closely together to deliver high-quality, clinical and outcomes-focused care to the injured workers we serve, in their home,” added sister and co-Managing Partner of HomeCare Connect, Teresa Williams.

About Paradigm
Paradigm is an accountable specialty care management organization focused on improving the lives of people with complex and catastrophic injuries and diagnoses. The company has been a pioneer in value-based care since 1991, offering deep clinical expertise, high-value specialty networks, behavioral health support, payment integrity solutions, and robust data analytics to generate the very best outcomes for patients, payers, and providers.

Paradigm is headquartered in Walnut Creek, California, with offices across the U.S. For more information, please visit www.paradigmcorp.com.

Rates & Ranks!

Today’s issue of WorkCompRecap features the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services recent release of the 2016 edition of its Workers’ Compensation Premium Rate Ranking study.

The goal of the study is to examine the relative cost of workers’ compensation across all 50 states plus the District of Columbia for a comparable mix of industries. DCBS noted that the national median index rate in the study declined to an all-time low of $1.84 per $100 of payroll. Index rates in 2016 varied from a low of $0.89 in North Dakota to a high of $3.24 in California. 21 states had an index rate that was within +/- 10% of the benchmark value.

Find out more (including a link to the free report!) by clicking here!

You can read the rest of today’s Top Stories by visiting WorkCompWire.com.

It’s Fall, so

Slip and fall accidents are the leading cause of worker’s compensation claims and are the leading cause of occupational injury for individuals aged 55 years and older. A slip and fall accident occurs when someone slips on a smooth or wet surface or trips on a rough or uneven surface. The most common injuries are to their backs, necks, knees and arms. Slip and fall accidents make up 15% of all worker’s compensation claims with the average cost around $22,000.

A “slip” typically occurs when there is not enough friction or traction between the feet and the walking surface. The most common causes of slips are wet surfaces, ice or other weather hazards, spills, and poor tread on footwear. Many slip & fall accidents can be prevented with precautionary measures that include the following:

  • Wet surfaces: Shorten your stride, walk with feet pointed out slightly, and make wider turns.
  • Spills: Clean up immediately. If you are unfamiliar with the contents of the spill, assume that it is a water or oil based liquid.
  • Weather hazards: Walk slower so you can react to traction changes. Wear slip resistant shoes or boots, and dry off shoes as soon as practical after entering a building (wet shoes on dry floors are as dangerous as dry shoes on wet floors).
  • Poor tread on footwear, or generally poor traction: Wear slip resistant footwear, apply abrasive strips to smooth walking surfaces, post warnings.

A “fall” typically occurs when the foot strikes an object and momentum throws off balance. To minimize the potential for this type of injury:

  • Do not allow carried packages to obstruct your view.
  • Use only safe walkways.
  • Close desk and file drawers when not in use.
  • Report burned out or missing lights.
  • Report any uneven or broken pavement, sidewalks, or handrails.

According to the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, more than 8.7 million people are injured from slip, trip and fall incidents every year. It is imperative that everyone assess their surroundings, stay alert and pay attention when they walk to ensure they do not have any slip and fall accidents. (click here for a printable copy)

To make a referral for Home Health, DME, or Home Modifications, please visit www.homecareconnect.com or call 855.223.2228.

Prosthetics in Comp

Jan Saunders, CPO
Prosthetics & Orthotics Director
HomeCare Connect

Amputations are the costliest injuries in workers’ comp, according to the 2016 Travelers Injury Impact Report. These injured employees need surgery, hospitalization, medications, home health care, numerous medical providers and prosthetics (artificial limbs). The Amputee Coalition reports five-year prosthetic costs to be as high as $450,000 per person. In workers’ comp, the goal is to avoid unnecessary features and costs, while providing a prosthetic that helps the injured employee return to work and to the lifestyle he or she enjoyed prior to the injury.

New technologies, manufacturing techniques and materials have produced amazing advances in prosthetics over the past 10 years. Fully articulating myoelectric hands, knees with microprocessors, and feet that can get wet are just a few innovations.

An artificial hand with fingers that move independently can help a painter return to work, and with some prosthetic legs, roofers can climb ladders backwards. Rotating wrist units for upper limb amputees enable machinists to return to full duties. Improved technologies mean that more injured employees can regain active life styles, even running, mountain biking and snowboarding.

(click here for entire article)

To make a referral for Home Health, DME, or Home Modifications, please visit www.homecareconnect.com or call 855.223.2228.

Comorbidity Effects Healing and Return to Work

By Dr. Ivan Castro
Medical Director
HomeCare Connect

February is national American Heart Month focused on education, awareness and prevention of heart disease. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (2015), Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States; affecting one out of four individuals. Heart disease occurs when cholesterol builds up into the bloodstream causing the blood flow to the heart to slow down or become restricted. Factors that contribute to heart disease consist of age, gender, race, family history, smoking, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

As the workforce continues to age and individuals tend to work longer, it is becoming more prevalent that comorbidity diagnosis occurs at or after an initial injury takes place. Comorbidities typically consist of obesity, diabetes, hypertension, high blood pressure, heart disease, high cholesterol, depression, insomnia, immune system issues, chronic pulmonary issues, tobacco use, alcohol addiction and drug addiction. A study conducted in November of 2012 by National Council of Compensation Insurers (NCCI), concluded that medical claims costs with comorbidities doubled than those without; average medical claim costs for hypertension was $15,656 compared to $2,490 without a comorbidity. It was also noted from 2000 to 2009 the share of workers’ compensation claims with comorbidity diagnosis nearly tripled from 2.4% to 6.6%.  (click here for entire article)

To make a referral for Home Health, DME, or Home Modifications, please visit www.homecareconnect.com or call 855.223.2228.

Medical Social Work as a Profession in Worker’s Compensation

By Teresa Williams, MSW LCSW
Chief Executive Officer
HomeCare Connect

According to National Association of Social Workers, medical social work is a sub-discipline of the social work profession wherein qualified social workers provide education to patients and their families about a particular illness or injury and counsel them through decisions that need to be made. The goal of the medical social worker (Med.SW) is to remove obstacles, whether in the patient’s surrounding or in mental health issues, so the patient can recover both physically and mentally. Medical social workers assess psychosocial functioning along with environmental and support needs of the patient and family, and intervene as needed.

In worker’s compensation, medical social workers are usually called upon to assist in the recovery process after a serious, sometimes life-threatening injury. Historically, medical social workers provide assistance with discharge planning post-hospitalization after an accident, linking the injured worker to resources that will support the recovery process once discharged. They work on an interdisciplinary team with other medical professionals, such as doctors, nurses, and physical, occupational, speech and recreational therapists. (read the complete article)

To make a referral for Home Health, DME, or Home Modifications, please visit www.homecareconnect.com or call 855.223.2228.

Traumatic Brain Injury (2/2)

By Dr. Ivan Castro
HomeCare Connect
Medical Director

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is caused by an injury to the head that disrupts the normal function of the brain. An individual with a brain injury has a very unpredictable sequence of recovery as no two TBI’s are identical. There is a wide range of severity when it comes to TBI. Recovering from a traumatic brain injury can be a lifelong journey with the main component of recovery revolving around learning as much as possible about TBI. Transitioning an injured worker with TBI from a hospital/rehabilitation center to home can be exciting as well as overwhelming for the injured worker and their family/caregivers.

When the injured worker and family/caregivers have made the decision to move back to a familiar setting with the ultimate goal of regaining as much physical and mental functions to maximize their recovery process, it is imperative that the discharge planner begin the transition to home weeks in advance to ensure a smooth, seamless transition home. The severity of head injury will determine the necessary resources needed to provide a safe and secure home environment for the injured worker. With the end goal being a greater sense of independence. These resources may consist of home safety evaluation, home modifications, durable medical equipment (DME), and home health inclusive of skilled therapies.  (read the complete article)

To make a referral for Home Health, DME, or Home Modification, please visit www.homecareconnect.com or call 855.223.2228.

Traumatic Brain Injury (1/2)

By Dr. Ivan Castro
HomeCare Connect
Medical Director

With the increase in workers compensation injuries, traumatic brain injury (TBI) is noted as the leading cause of long lasting disability, coma and death.  TBI occurs as a result of head trauma from an external or penetrating force leading to structural and/or psychological brain disruption. Depending on the type of brain injury, the recovery process can take years and in some instances, the injured worker may never recover their motor or cognitive ability. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates in 2010, approximately 2.5 million of TBI cases and 50,000 deaths. Timely treatment is of the essence and any delays in medical treatment can result in costly, long and extensive forms of rehabilitation. (read the complete article)

To make a referral for Home Health, DME, or Home Modification, please visit www.homecareconnect.com or call 855.223.2228.

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