Home Health, What’s Involved?
Home health covers a wide range of health care services that can be provided in your home for an illness or injury. Home health care is usually less expensive, more convenient, and just as effective as care you get in a hospital or skilled nursing facility (SNF). Home health care allows the elderly and medically dependent individuals to live in their own home with the assistance of a private care professional. Depending on their medical condition, home health care can help seniors to live independent fuller lives and avoid the need for a nursing home. In-home care can involve a variety of services from different types of health care professionals.
Home health care generally consists of two types of care:
- Home health care provided by licensed medical professionals for which you may need or have a prescription
- Non-medical home care such as personal care, homemaker or companionship services provided by professional caregivers.
What is Home Health Care?
Home health care is health care that occurs within one’s home. The term home health care and homecare are often interchanged; however, home health care refers to medical-related homecare while homecare encompasses all medical and non-medical homecare services. A home health care company provides services that include caregiver services, home health nursing, home therapists, home health aides, and more.
Why Home Care?
Providing care for aging loved ones can be overwhelming. For many family caregivers, caring for a loved one can be demanding and stressful.When families are in this situation, they often look to assisted living facilities, nursing homes and home care. Keeping a loved one at home with the help of home care is often a popular choice because it allows the senior to age at a place they feel comfortable and safe.
Home care services, both home health and non-medical, are often only required for a few hours a week. Depending on the level of care needed, home care has the potential to save thousands of dollars a month compared to nursing homes and assisted living facilities. As seniors age, some form of care is usually necessary to remain at home. In some cases, that means a family member or a friend.
Home care services provides a wide array of in-home care options, including nursing, physical therapy, occupational health, medical social services, and home health aides.
Registered nurses make certain the care plan set forth by the patient’s doctor is being carried out exactly as needed. These services may include administering proper medications and dosage, wound care, IV therapy, nutrition, education, identifying changes in medical status, and other medically necessary procedures.
Home Health Aides
A home health aide helps seniors or dependent patients with the daily tasks that they may not be able to perform on their own. These services may include assistance with bathing, dressing, light housekeeping, laundry, and other daily tasks. Under certain circumstances home health aides may be able to assist with medication or check vital signs under the direct supervision of a registered nurse or other certified health care professional.
Physical therapists help patients regain as much motor function as possible after an injury, surgery, or illness. The process usually starts with an assessment to determine the current medical state of the patient and possible restoration of motor function. The techniques used may include stretching, massage, and mechanics that are suitable for recovery.
Occupational Therapists are licensed care professional that help people regain or relearn fine motor skills. These skills usually involve daily living activities such as getting dressed, writing, cooking, and eating. Occupational Therapy typically helps the elderly who have had a stroke to regain as much functionality as possible. Other disabilities and traumatic brain injuries can benefit greatly from Occupational Therapy.
Medical Social Workers
Medical Social Workers are health care professionals that assess the Psychosocial needs of the patient and family. Medical Social Workers provide support with counseling, community resources, and social interactions of the patient in the community.