Comparing Home Health Care to a Nursing Home

Nursing homes are a necessary part of the health care picture for the elderly. However, we believe in helping people delay or completely avoid the necessity of having to reside in one. Staying with family in comfortable surroundings is usually a better environment for loved ones. In-Home Health Care is a great alternative. Nonetheless, we work with many nursing homes by supplying extra care for loved ones staying there.

Quality home care for the elderly provides quality of life to family members needing non-medical assistance in their lives. Professional and trusted home health care for seniors is a calling. Professional in-home health care helps those we love to lead a more fulfilling, healthier, and happier life.

It can be overwhelming to care for a loved one. A trusted, bonded and loyal staff can work with you to find and provide the home health care solutions to every situation. Having senior stay in their home can be the better alternative to a nursing home.

A good senior home health care organization will help in realizing that when home care is not an option. They will work with you in all settings including assisted living facilities, nursing homes, hospice care & hospitals.

Nursing homes can be expensive, they may not be the best option for your loved one. Keeping a loved one in their own home with help from a senior day care professional could be better for them.
Better for their self esteem, their self worth and your loved one will be grateful to stay home.
Senior day care and in-home health care will give you the advantage of providing trusted, bonded and loyal care for your loved one.

Whether you need part-time companionship or full-time at-home nursing care for any situation ranging from illness, aging, or rehabilitation, find professional home health care group that is committed to finding and implementing home health care solutions that work for you.

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Home Health Care History

The early nineteenth century witnessed the initial stages of the home health care industry that offered qualified nurses to take care of the poor and sick in their homes. In 1909 when Metropolitan Life Insurance Company started to write policies that comprised of home health care, this industry became very popular. This company is credited for paying the first compensation for home health care industry. This gave rise to the birth of organized home health care.

The Great Depression in 1929 caused several businesses along with home care industry a lot of hindrances and struggle. This went on till the follow-up visits made by nurses after hospital discharge became reimbursable by the Medicare Act of 1966. The home care industry became most feasible and practical when Medicare in an attempt to reduce hospitalization costs set up DRG’s program (Diagnostic Related Group). This laid down that some disease or hospital practice needed a certain stay period. So the discharged patients were more sick compared to their DRG counterparts.

The story does not finish with DRGs. This in fact was the commencement of patient care vs. medical ethics debate. This subject shall be soon addressed in the present health care reform segment. The price of health care is the issue. Questions like how much does a human life cost and how long one should pay for keeping alive a person after he ceases to be a contributor to the society need to be addressed.

Home health care industry needs to answer these questions. The main intention of the DRG programs was to cut down the hospital stay in order to lower hospitalization costs. Thus this becomes a challenge to the agencies. But gradually home care started becoming expensive. The Balanced Budge Act of 1997 hand one major side effect. It limited the benefit days to the patients under home health care thereby lowering the compensations to the various home health care agencies. This resulted in many of these agencies going out of business.

The price to take care of a patient will always stay an issue. There was a growth of nosocomial diseases in hospitals that lead to heavy health care costs. Patients started getting discharged in a much sicker condition than before. This put additional burden on the family of the patient to make available good care once the family member is home. Also majority of the people were working. Home health care agencies that provide services were unable to discharge patients when they exceed their Medicare days if they are in a bad condition or its not safe to depart from them without any nursing services.

In case the home care agency declines admission of a patient who seems sicker than the number of reimbursement days allowed by the government, the patients’ family does not have too many choices. In case of the patient being discharged without any adequate follow-up care, the patients’ family can seek services of a qualified agency that could strain on emergency room visits and re-hospitalization leading to more compensation issues. Such questions are difficult to answer more so in cases where cost is to be taken care of. But, as time passes, such questions will continue to haunt till there are satisfactory answers to them.

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Seven Tips For Starting Up a Home Health Care Business

If we stop and think about it, we can all emphasize with those senior citizens who are no longer able to care for themselves, and who are faced with having to leave their homes in order to get the care they need. No one wants to confront a choice like that, giving up the comfortable and familiar for the unknown. This is why health home care businesses are cropping up all over the country. The people who operate these businesses go into the seniors’ homes to do light housekeeping, personal care, medication supervision, and other services which allow the seniors to remain living in their own homes. Some caregivers even have medical training to help those who are infirm.

Does becoming a caregiver sound like something you’d like to do? This is a lucrative profession that offers the self-satisfaction of being able to help those in need. Even if you have no medical background, you will still be able to set yourself up in business, and it isn’t going to cost very much to get started. By following these tips, you’ll be working for yourself in just a short time.

1. Every state has its own rules and regulations when it comes to licensed home care providers. You will need to contact the state department of the state in which you live to find out how you can go about becoming licensed. They will be able to provide you with a list of regulations so that you can get your business off to a clean start.

2. Compare your skills to those that people are needing to have done. Do some research to determine if there is a market for what you can do. Simple skills like laundry, bed-making, dusting, and helping an elderly person take a bath are in demand. If you can add transportation to medical appointments and grocery shopping to your list of services, you’ll find a lot of people who are looking for just a person like you.

3. Talk to an attorney about your options. What kind of a business would it be best for you to operate: a sole proprietorship, a partnership, a limited liability corporation, or a corporation? If you are planning on employing others, you will also need to visit with an accountant to find out about such responsibilities as payroll, sales tax, worker’s compensation, and tax and business liability.

4. Apply to the federal government for an Employee Identification Number (EIN). This is a free service that you can obtain either online or by calling the IRS. The number you will receive is comparable to a social security number for your business.

5. You may want to start out with longer business hours and a wide variety of services. As you progress, you’ll discover which of these work best for you and your clientele, so that you’ll be able to cut back. It’s easy to say now that you want to run your business 24 hours a day so that you can make the maximum profit, but you’ll soon realize that this isn’t realistic. Carve out a comfortable niche for yourself in the vast field of home care.

6. You will need insurance for liability. Apply for private insurance as well as for Medicare and Medicaid. Many insurance companies are helping caregivers get into business and stay in business, because home health care is much less expensive than nursing home and hospital stays.

7. Although start-up costs are minimal in this line of work, you still need to make a list of the things you will need and develop a business plan that will make your plans more attractive to the banks where you apply for assistance.

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Should You Opt For Home Health Care?

Most people prefer home health care to hospital care because of the advantages of the previous to the latter. Many clinics and hospitals are understaffed; resulting in poor medical attention towards patients. This leads to possible worsening of the patient’s health. Fortunately, home health care can be done to prevent this from happening.

Home health care helps a person get well in the comforts and security of his own place. Family members can act as care givers or a professional health practitioner such as a nurse or a caregiver may be hired. Personalized treatments such as wound dressings, blood tests, and insulin injections for diabetics may be readily available through home health care. Home health care also costs less compared to hospital care. A person does not need to pay an expensive hospital room. He will not have to deal with hospital food either. In the convenience of his own place, a person has the advantage of being with his loved ones
everyday while on medication.

Family members are confident and secured of their loved one’s safety at home. Friends and relatives may also visit anytime they want without having to worry about visiting hours. A person receiving home health care is also certain to be well fed and well taken care of. He can relax and receive treatment at the same time. For example, a diabetic person can watch his favorite television show while being injected with insulin. He might not be allowed to do this in a hospital where he would certainly become bored and unproductive. And in addition, a person suffering from a long illness is able to rest at home; with his family physician acting as the primary doctor.

However, in spite of the numerous advantages a home health care offers, certain disadvantages of this arrangement must be taken into consideration. For instance, home health care may lack in medical equipments and facilities needed by the patient. Emergency situations may also be difficult to handle at home. And if there are many people or children in the household, the person receiving treatment might have a very little sense of privacy.

There could also come a time when family members taking care of their sick loved one become fatigued and burned out. Some family members, especially children, might also be afraid to have a dying person in the house. In these kinds of cases, hospital care is necessary. Specialized medical care and facilities are immediately available in hospitals.

Still, even if such disadvantages exist, home health care is proven to be effective in helping patients recover faster. People prefer to be medically treated in their own homes because the happiness and satisfaction they feel at home can not be compared to what they feel in a hospital.

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Home Health Care vs Assisted Living

Home Health Care in Los Angeles

Home health care is health care that is provided to patients inside their home, and usually by either health care professionals or family and friends. The term “home care” suggests that the care provided is non-medical and more of a custodial nature, whereas “home health care” may suggest licensed staff members. The differences here are similar to the differences between assisted living facilities and nursing homes. Much like assisted living facilities, home health care lets seniors enjoy a good measure of independence. An elderly individual or couple will appreciate having privacy as well as assistance in daily living needs.

What Home Health Care Provides

What kind of services does home health care provide? Home health care may help seniors with daily living needs such as bathing, dressing, house keeping and cooking and dining preparation. Depending on the needs of the resident, there may be special provisions such as transportation services and errands, volunteer programs, exercise and walking, and toileting assistance. More extensive forms of home health care would also provide rehabilitation programs, including visits from physical therapists and nurses. Other qualified home health care professionals may include respiratory nurses, occupational nurses, social workers, mental health workers and physicians.

Who pays for home health care? This type of outside assisted living program can be paid by private resources from the resident or family, by public payers such as Medicare and Medicaid or by employer-sponsored health insurance plans. Medicare will usually not pay for home health care on a long term basis while Medicaid is more likely to help low-income families with little or no assets. Employer-sponsored home health care is likely to be on a short term basis unless the insurance plan is very generous. Most of the time home health care will be paid for by a family’s own resources.

Comparing Home Health Care with Assisted Living

How does home health care compare with in-house stays at nursing homes and assisted living facilities? Most seniors would prefer home health care, of course, as people always do value their privacy. However, there are also circumstances that would necessitate constant supervision of the resident at an assisted living facility, and not only occasional visits. Home health care is basically assisted living, but with even more independence. Therefore a resident that cannot be left alone for long periods of time would be better suited in a nursing or board and care type home.

It might appear that home health care would be cheaper than a stay in a nursing home. However, home health care costs can be just as expensive, depending on the number of hours aides work. Some residents have admitted that full time home health care usually costs twice as much as a stay in a board and care or assisted living home. Most home health care agencies will charge about $20.00 an hour or over. If the resident is relatively independent then the fees associated with the service can be controlled. However, don’t forget that if your needs are minimal to begin with, you could hire a trusted individual to perform the same tasks and save money from paying an agency fee.

Home health care is ideal for seniors who feel well and can easily get around but who need occasional doctor visits and help with housekeeping. It is also a preferable choice if a senior needs full time care but does not want to become a resident in a public nursing home. Full time home health care provides the most privacy and personal attention possible. If you are looking for this type of senior assistance, you should always be mindful of the qualifications of workers, as opening one’s home to a stranger could always be a security risk. The best home health care agencies have screened workers who are well qualified in their field.

How We Can Help You

ElderHomeFinders is a company dedicated to helping seniors locate assistance in the southern California area. We inspect assisted living facilities and retirement communities in the area so that our clients will find the perfect home at a price they can afford. Can ElderHomeFinders also help seniors find home health care? Yes. Our company can put you in touch with the right home health care agency, according to your special needs and budget limitation. We can also advise you on the differences between home health care services and assisted living and board and care facilities and which choice would better work for you. Seniors have worked hard all their life and surely deserve the best health care possible – whether in a senior living facility or in their own home.

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