You may have a relative or friend who chooses to continue living at home while receiving home health services. If your loved one is an elderly individual, it may be best to have that person first evaluated by a primary care physician or to have a social worker assess the at-home residence to make sure that this is a safe choice. Once safety is assured, then there are a number of other vital issues that will have to be addressed and settled before you start searching for a home health care provider.
Level Of Care
Establish what level of care will be needed—you'll have two main in-home services to choose from. One of those services is skilled care, which covers medical needs. The other choice is custodial care, which means environmental assistance help will be needed. What you should be looking for is a home care health provider company that provides both kinds of care in an integrated system of services. It's a good idea to search online for provider information.
Obtain Important Information From Website Links
If you're searching online for a provider, use links on the website that offer brochures and give information about fees and sources of funding. Ask about the company's Patient Bill of Rights. It's an important document to have. That document tells you about the rights and responsibilities of home care health providers and those who receive care from them. Peruse the company's annual report and educational materials, which offer a wealth of information about providers.
Take Advantage Of Evaluation Offers
A provider company that offers a nurse or other therapists to evaluate your loved one's home care needs and status shows that the organization cares, and you should take advantage of this offer. You want to ensure that each professional working as a team member strives to give the best care to your loved one. Make sure to ask for a contact number that you can use to call and speak with a provider staff member if you wish to ask more questions.
Discuss Need For Special In-Home Services
Listed below are some in-home services that you can compare with your relative's needs. Prioritize the following needs and discuss any of them with the skilled nurse or other therapists who will be on you relative's home health care team.
- Rehabilitation care such as physical therapy
- Diabetic care
- Orthopedic care
- Podiatry care
- Oxygen therapy
- Medication and pain management
If your loved one is covered by Medicare, work closely with a social worker who can make all arrangements for direct reimbursement from Medicare or Medicaid to providers. If your relative has Medicare-only insurance, the social worker will advise you about your Medigap insurance, which picks up the balance of costs after Medicare pays the provider. Medicare insurance is integrated with Medigap provider reimbursement computer technology, so those payments will be paid directly to the provider.