Taking actions in areas the team has control over creates certainty during uncertain times. Focusing on the fundamentals of program management and operational effectiveness help stabilize the team, and demonstrate program responsiveness and accountability to the organization.

Four Places to Start

Your organizational leaders are making decisions in response to COVID-19, which means that now is the time to engage.

The goal: Prove that you are a problem-solver and a collaborator.

Where to start:

Use this list to think about which goals your leaders and colleagues may be focused on during the COVID Era.

Meet with stakeholders to understand their priorities, so you can plan your palliative care strategy accordingly. CAPC provides on who to talk to, what to ask them, and how to put your best foot forward.

Tip: Don't overlook your financial managers. Take five minutes to learn how to plan a conversation with these important stakeholders.

Optimizing Appropriate Billing

Being a good financial steward of your palliative care program means ensuring appropriate revenue for the services you provide. Ask yourself: Is the program accurately documenting and billing for its services?

  • Do I have the billing reports I need to audit the program's billing and coding practices?
  • Do I meet regularly (quarterly) with the billing team to review our billing data and strengthen relationships?
  • Is our program optimizing all of the appropriate billable services?

Where to start:

CAPC's is a starter kit for best practices. For information on specific codes, including for advance care planning (ACP), non-face-to-face, care management and care plan oversight, and setting-specific billing and coding, use CAPC's billing toolkit.

Is your program using telehealth? Spend five minutes learning telehealth billing best practices.

Alternate Sources of Program Revenue

Fee-for-service billing does not cover the full costs of an interdisciplinary palliative care team. If you haven't considered contracting for your services with a health plan or risk-bearing entity in the past, now is the time—and CAPC has the tools to help.

Start with , and for more information, explore CAPC's toolkit on value-based payment contracting.

A high-performing team continuously looks at issues like team communication, role clarity, and workflow to openly address barriers and make sure everyone is operating at the top of their license and skills. If the team is working well together, you’ll make best use of resources and prevent burnout and turnover.

  • Are we using our team meetings efficiently?
  • How well is our team communicating throughout the day?
  • Can we use telehealth to maximize time?
  • Are you actively managing your census? Do a self-assessment to answer:
    • Are we seeing the right patients?
    • How can we grow earlier referrals from key stakeholders (e.g., hospitalists, cardiology, oncology)?
    • Are we following patients too long? Or not long enough?
    • Use CAPC's to standardize patient tracking over time

For some palliative care teams, COVID-19 has been a source of exhaustion, moral distress, and grief. Be proactive in addressing team health to promote resilience and prevent burnout.

Where to start: