5 Types of Home Care You Should Know About when Planning for Long-Term Care posted on: 04-11-2014

Many people put off planning for their long-term care until it’s too late. Once an issue arises that prompts the need for care, searching for the right care for yourself or a loved one can be overwhelming. So, when is the right time to start thinking about the future of your care? The answer is right now.

Because many Americans wish to age in place, a good place to start your long-term care plan is with a greater understanding of your in-home care options. The following are the five types of home care that everyone should know about before creating their long-term care plan:

  1. Full Service Private Duty/Private Pay Agencies are usually “non-medical” services and can range from companionship, housekeeping, transportation, personal care, and dementia care to 24-hour or respite care. A private duty home care agency, like North River Home Care, provides non-medical care by employees of the agency who are screened, trained, monitored and typically bonded and insured. There is far more safety in this model, and far less potential liability for the care recipient than with a nursing registry.
  2. Nursing Registries/Healthcare Registries act as “matchmaker” services, assigning workers to clients and patients who need home care. However, registries place the responsibilities of managing and supervising the worker on the patient, a family member, or a family advisor. Supervision, monitoring, government-mandated taxes, and workers’ compensation coverage usually fall on the consumer and oftentimes the workers are not trained.
  3. Home Health Care is skilled nursing care that one receives at home for the treatment of an illness or injury. Examples are care for a wound (dressing changes); injections; monitoring of health conditions like diabetes, blood pressure or heart disease; assistance with medical equipment like dialysis; assistance with an indwelling catheter; assistance with a naso-gastric (NG) tube feeding or a ventilator. Services are often provided by Medicare-certified Home Health Agencies (HHA’s). Home Health Care can also provide rehabilitation services including speech, physical and respiratory therapies.
  4. Hospice Care is a special concept of care designed to provide comfort and support to patients and their families when a life-limiting illness no longer responds to cure-oriented treatments. Hospice is generally depicted as end-of-life care and can be in a home or a hospital setting, but it is usually required that someone be with the dying patient at all times. How a family accomplishes this is up to the individual and the family. Hospice entails a range of services from nurses and mental health professionals to spiritual advisors.
  5. Medicaid Home and Community Based Care is intended to provide services for those who cannot afford to pay for care—and is designed with the goal of keeping the person out of a nursing home. Recipients do not need to be homebound or ill to receive the services. To access Medicaid services, the client must first be assessed by a state agency that gate-keeps the program and be approved for a specific number of home care hours or given a voucher for a certain amount of care.

Understanding the types of care available can help families better prepare for care in the future. If you’d like to learn more about your in-home care options in the Norwell, Massachusetts area, contact the North River Home Care team today!