What You Need To Know About Home Health Care

Home health care can be the perfect option for families with elderly loved ones who need constant care and attention. The patient’s doctor decides on the health care plan and chooses an option that is covered by insurance or Medicare. The agency responsible for providing the care follows the plan outlined by the physician and works with the patient’s family to provide a service that keeps the patient safe while offering a degree of independence. Senior citizens enrolled in Medicare and Medicaid plans should find that the cost of care is covered. It is a less expensive care method than a nursing home and enables the patient to remain in their home.

Plus Points of Home Health Care
•    It is relatively inexpensive since Medicare/Medicaid covers the majority of the costs.
•    Only services provided are paid for which means no hidden fees or costs.
•    Private insurance can also be used to cover these services.
•    Families/spouses have the option to remain part of their loved one’s care.
•    A high level of care is provided in a comfortable setting.

Downside of Home Health Care
The main issue with home health care from a service perspective is that the patient doesn’t receive 24 hour care like they would in a nursing home. This is because you are only paying for the services provided. It can be far more expensive if the patient requires assistance with all meals, bathing and reminders to take medication. It is possible to receive 24 hour care but only with the approval of the patient’s doctor.

Home Health Care Eligibility Requirements
In order for an individual to become eligible for home health care, it is necessary to gain permission from the patient’s doctor. This physician must also provide a care plan which is to be followed by the service provider. The patient must be housebound and be incapable of leaving the home without a certain level of assistance. If you are relying on Medicare to foot the bill, you must use a home health agency that is Medicare-certified. Additionally, patients should require skilled nursing care on a part-time basis, physical therapy or occupational therapy.

Duration of Home Health Care
The length of time a patient can receive home health care is determined by an assessment of the care plan by the patient’s physician and the service provider. This assessment should be reviewed every 60 days and revised whenever necessary. However, there is no maximum permissible duration for home health care treatment and it can be a permanent solution in some cases.

Leaving your loved one in the hands of a home health care provider can be one of the most difficult decisions you ever make. Yet if you have a parent or elderly relative that is unable to leave the home because of health problems and is unable to safely live alone, it is an option that must be seriously considered. The alternative is to take them out of their home and leave them in a nursing home. This is more expensive and can be extremely distressing for the person involved.

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