Are you or a loved one considering home health care? It is a great option for medical treatment and has many benefits. Perhaps the biggest benefit of home health care is being able to receive high quality medical care from the comfort of your own home. Home health care offers a wide range of services, including nursing care, home health aide services, rehabilitation care and medical social services.
What is Home Health Care?
Home health care is as simple as it sounds- medical care that is provided in a patient’s home, or any place the patient calls home. Home health care can include broad care given by medical professionals, including skilled nursing care, pain control and management, wound care, physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy. Home health care can also include non-medical care, such as social services or emotional support for the patient and family.
Who needs home health care?
In order to qualify for home health care you must be considered homebound and be under the care of a physician who manages and authorizes home health care services. A person who requires a type of skilled nursing service or therapy (physical, occupational and/or speech) would also be eligible.
What is considered homebound?
Generally, to be considered homebound, a person has a condition that makes it very hard for them to leave home. They suffer from a condition due to illness or injury that requires the aid of medical equipment such as crutches, a walker or wheelchair or the help of another person. Typically, homebound people only leave the house for medical care which they can’t receive at home or short outings such as church.
How often are home health care visits?
The frequency of visits is determined by your personal care plan created by you and your doctor. This will depend on the scope of services that are being performed at your home.
What can I expect on the first home health care visit?
During your first visit, your nurse will explain all the details of your plan of care, including other medical professionals that are part of your home health care team and how often you’ll see them. These can include physical therapists, social workers, registered dietitians, and home health aides.
How to select a Home Health Care Provider
It is a good idea to do some research about local home health care providers and create a list of questions you would like to ask each one of them. Common questions are:
- How long have you been serving the community?
- Do you have any informational publications explaining services, fees and eligibility requirements?
- How do you hire and train your employees to ensure they are providing the best care?
- Do you involve the patient and their family in developing the plan of care?
- What are the financial procedures? Are there payment options?
Does insurance cover home health care?
If a patient requires skilled care and meets certain eligibility requirements, Medicare may cover the home health care program as long as the patient remains eligible and their doctor confirms they need it. State Medicaid programs or private insurance may also cover home health care, or some services that Medicare doesn’t cover. Check with your state Medicaid program or insurance company to learn about their specific eligibility requirements.
Is home health care considered hospice?
No. Hospice care assists individuals, their families and/or caregivers to achieve the best quality of life during a terminal illness. Patients in hospice care are not trying to prolong their life, they are simply trying to enjoy the time that they have left. Home health care provides individualized services which strengthen the independent lifestyle and promote dignity of the elderly and disabled in their own place of residence.
Rocky Mountain Care is a leading provider of hospice care, home health care, and skilled nursing facilities. We strongly believe that each of our patients is special and unique, and deserves the highest respect and service possible. Our care and specialized programs meet the needs of our patients and their families. Through home health care, we want to help you live happier, healthier and more independently. Please contact us today to learn more.