The Visiting Homemaker Service of Passaic County, Inc. (VHS, doing business as HomeCare Options) was founded to deliver essential home and community care services of a preeminent quality that improves the human condition for recipients and their families. In the process of providing this care VHS seeks to establish and retain the highest possible level of public confidence.
This Code of Ethics, adopted by the Board of Trustees on September 27, 1999, serves as a statement to inform the general public and staff that VHS stands for integrity and ethical standards, has established acceptable guidelines for ethical conduct, and advances notice to government officials, payer, and referral sources that VHS is committed to abide by all applicable laws and regulations.
Rights and Responsibilities
It is inherent in the declaration of this Code of Ethics that VHS pledges to protect and preserve the rights of clients and staff, to deal with them in an honest and ethical manner, and maintain confidentiality.
It is anticipated that observance of the rights and responsibilities will contribute to more effective care and greater satisfaction for the recipient as well as the agency. The rights will be respected by all agency personnel and integrated into all programs. A copy of these rights and responsibilities will be given to each client upon admission and to the staff upon hire.
Relations with Outside Organizations
VHS shall honestly and conscientiously cooperate in providing information about referrals and shall work together with other organizations to assure comprehensive services to recipients and their families.
VHS shall participate in public dialogue and advocate solutions with other organizations that will improve the health status of the community and promote quality care.
VHS will cooperate with all reasonable and lawful demands made by governmental investigations or law enforcement agents. VHS shall prevent written, copied or electronic documentation from being altered or destroyed in anticipation of a request or as a result of a request for those documents by any authorized, lawful investigation.
VHS will ensure that:
- All billed services are consistent with the amount and type of care provided and are compliant with program regulations and guidelines.
- The cost per hour, visit or day includes only legitimate expenses and reasonable earnings.
- No kickbacks or payoffs are received or paid.
- All accounts receivable are handled according to agency policy.
- Pay scales are consistent with the area and discipline and compensation include only those travel and business expenses that are within a reasonable norm.
VHS shall maintain accounting records according to acceptable accounting principles and practices and have the agency financial records audited annually by an independent CPA firm.
Relations With The Public
VHS will be truthful in all forms of professional and agency communication, and avoid disseminating information that is false, misleading, or deceptive. VHS shall ensure that all oral and written statements will fairly represent service, benefits, cost, and agency capabilities. This shall include information descriptive of home care in general, as well as agency specific information.
VHS shall work to ensure that all people have reasonable access to care.
VHS will be an equal opportunity employer and comply with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations. This means that VHS shall hire qualified employees and utilize them at the level of their competency. The agency shall hire adequate staff to meet the needs of the recipient of care. All staff are oriented to the agency Code of Ethics.
VHS shall have written personnel policies and make them available to all employees that shall include an ongoing evaluation process, supervision, continuing education for all employees, and other conditions of employment.
VHS management shall lead the organization in the use and improvement of standards of management and sound business practices. This means it must uphold the values, ethics, and mission of the agency and conduct itself professionally with honesty, integrity, respect, fairness, and good faith in a manner that will reflect upon VHS consistent with this Code of Ethics.
Approved by BoT: 9/27/99
Approved by Ethics Committee 9/27/99