When to Make the Call for in Home Care
Written by Danielle Bauhaus, Director of Marketing & Community Relations
I remember when my grandpa resisted home care.
Picture this: a 72-year old proud Vietnam Veteran, so resilient and SO proud. Calling in a home health aid was simply out of the question… my papa was far too proud to ever ask for help. But I will be the first to say, I wish we would have sooner.
My papa passed away in Hospice with multiple health issues, including various cancer shadows, diabetes, and heart disease. While he fought a long battle, I often find myself wondering if we had called in-home care while we still could, if I could’ve had more time with him.
What is Home Health Care?
According to Medicaid, home health care is a service that is used to help treat an illness or injury. Essentially, home health care helps those in need regain their independence, while in the comfort of their own home. Needs vary across the board, but oftentimes home health care is recommended for the patient when he or she can no longer perform “normal” activities, such as bathing, or has recently undergone major surgery.
Only nursing professionals assist with skilled home care, including physical therapists, registered nurses, and certified nursing assistants. Your home health care team is under the direction of a case manager, who ensures you are receiving accurate and proper care, by abiding by your physician’s orders.
What to Expect
As mentioned above, your home health care team follows the instructions from your Physician and will consistently keep him or her updated on your progress. Depending on your personal needs, your home health care team may monitor your eating and drinking habits, as well as your pain levels. In addition to that, your aid or nurse will most likely take your vital signs and temperature, as well as inspect the safety of your home. They may also count your medications to ensure you are taking them as prescribed. Your team should always keep you or your loved one updated on your progress by communicating regularly.
Home Care VS. In-Home Care
Many misinterpret home care from skilled in-home care. While many duties align, only skilled in-home care, prescribed by a doctor, includes the performance of medical services.
See the chart below for reference:
When to Make the Call
It is common that if your loved one is to receive skilled in-home care, it will be doctor recommended, including a plan of treatment. However, without a strong recommendation from a healthcare professional, it can be difficult to determine when to reach out to an agency for help.
If you notice that your loved one is having difficulty with daily activities or personal care, such as bathing or preparing meals, you should reach out to an agency. As you age, Alzheimer’s and other dementia-related diseases can set in, making it difficult for your loved ones to remember to eat or take medication. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, “More than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s. By 2050, this number is projected to rise to nearly 14 million.” With that in mind, an aid is able to assist with medication reminders, proper hygiene, and any gaps in nutritional decline.
If your loved one is recovering from major surgery and the physician suggests in-home care, it is vital that you follow the order. The physician will most likely also recommend an agency based on insurance acceptance or because he or she has worked with an agency in the past on a referral basis.
If you are in the Northwest Ohio region, and you find that your loved one is in need of home care services, please consider Med1Care. While we are #1 in quality care and quality service, Susan’s statement says more than I can elaborate: “The entire process was seamless; one on one service with my physical therapist made all the difference for me. If you ever get the chance to get in-home care, I highly recommend Med1Care.”