What is a Florida Nurse Registry?
A Florida Nurse Registry is a state-licensed caregiver service that matches clients with safe, trained, qualified caregivers to assist with in-home care.
Why specify a Florida Nurse Registry?
Why does it matter where a nurse registry is located? Florida is one of the most advanced and progressive states when it comes to Nurse Registries. Florida has specific statutes & guidelines that govern the operation of a nurse registry that are in place to protect consumers seeking care.
Nurse Registries offer consumers an affordable option to find safe and effective trained caregivers. In fact, when studied by a study conducted by the Florida House Of Representatives in 1999 titled: Repeal Of Nurse Registry Regulation. It was ultimately determined that by working with a Florida Nurse Registry consumers save 20-30% over working with traditional Home Health Agencies.
Therefore, the study provided the following guidance to lawmakers and consumers. “Based on the findings and conclusions in this report it would not be beneficial to the state, independent contractors providing home health care, or consumers seeking home health care to repeal this section. It is therefore recommended that the Legislature not repeal s. 400.506, F.S.”
Depending on who you ask you may hear a lot of answers about what a Florida Nurse Registry is though.
In this post, we will be specifically addressing what a Florida Nurse Registry is since Florida is one of the more progressive states for this type of service as outlined above. At its simplest, a Florida Nurse Registry is a source for clients to find safe and professional private caregivers. Of course, that is a grossly oversimplified explanation.
We have heard of some Nursing Agencies attempting to create confusion by misdirecting and misleading consumers. This creates a Florida Nurse Registry VS Home Health Agency climate. This often intentional misinformation only serves to confuse and misdirect consumers.
The reality is, as reviewed in the study conducted by the Florida House of Representatives, a Florida Nurse Registry offers consumers a cost-saving option and should not be viewed as Nurse Registry VS Home Health Agency.
In Florida, The Agency for Healthcare Administration AHCA oversees and regulates many health-related businesses including Hospitals, Nursing Homes, Nursing Agencies, and Nurse Registries.
There are pages upon pages of guidelines that define and govern a Florida Nurse Registry. It’s pretty dry reading but here is a link if you are curious.
The guidelines enforced by AHCA are very similar for both Florida Nurse Registries and Nurse Agencies, and are in place to protect the potentially vulnerable population these businesses serve.
Some of the guidelines include minimum levels of caregiver training, required background screening, and required emergency plans. These guidelines help to ensure that the seniors in our state receive the safest, most effective in-home private care available.
What sets the Florida Nurse Registry apart is the way its business is structured.
A Florida Nurse Registry may not have any employees who are caregivers. Instead, they work with professional, private caregivers who are registered as Independent Contractors.
The caregivers a nurse registry works with employment status as Independent Contractors is statutorily required.
The statute reads: “The nurse registry shall advise the patient, the patient’s family, or any other person acting on behalf of the patient, at the time of the contract for services, that the caregiver referred by the nurse registry is an independent contractor.”
A Florida Nurse Registry screens individual caregivers based on the strict standards set by the state of Florida and refers them to clients seeking their services.
In general, Abby Services and other Nurse Registries don’t provide In-Home Care but are a source for seniors to find In-Home caregivers. Nurse Registries act as a matchmaking service of sorts connecting consumers seeking caregivers with caregivers seeking work opportunities.
For example, a senior who is looking for a pleasant caregiver to assist with meal preparation, bathing, pet care, and light housekeeping, may contact a Nurse Registry.
The Nurse Registry then searches their extensive database of private in-home caregivers to help find a good match for their client.
Florida Nurse Registries allow clients greater control of their care by allowing clients to direct where and when they want to receive care.
Clients with Nurse Registries also direct what services they would like to receive. Abby Services and other Nurse Registries won’t interfere with a client’s scheduled caregiver because that caregiver is not their employee. This results in greater caregiver consistency.
Florida Nurse Registries and Abby Services have been likened to a Yacht Broker or Realtor. Yacht Brokers & Realtors don’t actually own, produce, or control the product they represent. They simply act as a marketplace where consumers can easily and safely obtain these products.
In a Nurse Registries case, the product would be safe and effective pre-screened private caregivers.
The reality is that when comparing a Nurse Registry VS a Home Health Agency they share more similarities than they do differences.
The Department of Labor explains the way a Florida Nurse Registry works in the following example:
Example: ABC Company advertises as a “registry” that provides potential direct care workers.
The registry conducts a background screening and verifies the credentials of potential workers, and assists clients by locating direct care workers who may be able to meet a client’s needs.
ABC Company informs, a direct care worker, of the opportunity to work for a potential client. If the direct care worker is interested in the opportunity, she is responsible for contacting the client for more information.
Ann is not obligated to pursue this or any other opportunity presented, and she is not prohibited from registering with other referral services or from working directly with clients independent of ABC Company.
The registry does not provide any equipment to Ann and does not supervise or monitor any work Ann performs. ABC Company has no power to terminate Ann’s employment with a client.
ABC Company processes Ann’s payroll checks according to information provided by clients but does not set the pay rate. 113 In this scenario, Ann is likely not an employee of ABC Company. There is no permanency in the relationship between the registry and Ann.
The registry does not provide any equipment or facilities, exercises no control over daily activities, and has no power to hire or fire. Ann is able to accept as many or as few clients as she wishes. The client sets the rate of pay and negotiates directly with Ann about which services will be provided.