Home health care, often referred to simply as "home health," is qualified care delivered directly to the patient's home.
This kind of care is provided by licensed health professionals, such as nurses, therapists, and helpers, to treat an illness, injury, or medical condition. Home health services can be provided at the patient's residence (a private home or adult nursing home), in an assisted living or long-term care facility, or at a care or reminder facility.
Services that might be covered include medical services such as qualified nursing, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and nonmedical services, such as social services or support in daily living.
Home care is appropriate when a person needs ongoing care that cannot be quickly or effectively provided exclusively by family and friends but does not need to be in a hospital.
Older people who choose an independent and non-institutionalized life receive home care services as their physical capacities decline. As hospitals refuse, more and more patients require highly qualified services when they return home.
Other patients can stay home and receive safe and effective care from the comfort of their homes.
There are rules about how you can qualify for home health care, especially if you want insurance or Medicare to cover the cost. To be eligible, you will need to meet the following requirements:
- Be in the care of a doctor who orders home health services
- Meet the definition of “homebound”
- Intermittently require skilled nursing or therapy services
Must have a medical condition that meets the criteria for home care. It would help if you had a qualified doctor, such as a nurse, physical therapist, or speech therapist.
A Medicare patient must be medically home (absences are rare and short-term, or require medical attention and should be a tax burden).
Staying homebound means that you cannot leave your home more than once or twice a week for social reasons, and it is a significant and tiring effort for you to leave the house.
You may leave your home an unlimited number of times for medical treatment, religious services, or adult daycare at an approved or accredited facility, as long as you meet the criteria above.
Home health care is paid for in many ways:
Medicare for people over age 65 or people with disabilities who require highly qualified care
Medicaid eligibility medical assistance through public support
Private insurance for those whose insurance covers home health or private nursing
Private payment to those who are not eligible for insurance-based reimbursement or who have exhausted their refund under other coverage. Rates are based on a sliding scale.
Most Americans age 65 and older are eligible for government Medicare coverage, which they can then pay for home health services. To receive reimbursement of benefits, Medicare requires that the following conditions:
Patient is eligible for Medicare beneficiary
The doctor certifies the need for care and creates a plan
The patient meets the Medicare definition of "homebound"
The patient must receive care at their residence
The patient needs skilled nursing care or therapy, intermittently
Services are provided by a Medicare-certified agency
If you don't qualify or don't want to take advantage of Medicare, you may be able to get home health care provided by covered private insurance.
Many insurers offer a cost-sharing scheme for professional home care for older people. In general, home care providers accept Medicare. In many cases, Medicare pays for home health care if you are a current beneficiary and meet specific requirements.
Yes, you can keep your current physician. There are several ways to seek medical care at home. However, the first step is for your doctor to evaluate your condition and create a home health plan.
Your doctor will order home health care and remain responsible for your medical care. The home health team will continually communicate with your doctor to ensure that you receive the most appropriate treatment and meet your specific needs
Home health care can start as soon as the patient's doctor makes a formal request or referral.
An AtHome Healthcare Team representative will endeavor to see the patient within 24 to 48 hours of receiving the referral.
The frequency of visits is based on the doctor's instructions and the patient's needs and may vary from once a day, but mostly once or twice a week. Visits usually last an hour or less.
Home health services are provided on a temporary basis. Visits are planned to meet the needs and preferences of patients. Because care is designed to optimize patients' well-being and independence, visits tend to become more frequent at first and decrease as the patient recovers.
Home health authorities must also comply with federal regulations for Medicare reimbursement.
If you have Medicare insurance coverage, you'll need to choose a Medicare-approved home health care provider.
The home health services of the AtHome Healthcare Team are certified by Medicare. The California Department of Health also licenses us.
Hospice is a particular form of care that aims to improve the quality of a patient's last days. Its primary focus is to alleviate the symptoms of the disease, with a particular focus on pain and symptom management.
It also prioritizes the emotional, social, and spiritual issues a patient may face and their family. Our trained professionals and volunteers work with family members to provide comfort and dignity in the patient's last days.
Depending on your needs or those of your loved one, hospice care can be done in almost any setting, including the patient's home, a friend's or family member's home, qualified care facilities, assisted living facilities, or senior housing. In most cases, patients prefer comfortable and safe care in their own homes.