Home care and home health are distinct types of care that are both provided in a home setting. However, most people aren’t aware of the differences and use them interchangeably. The key difference is that home care is non-medical. It refers to supportive care, such as bathing/dressing, housekeeping and/or transportation. Home health is clinical medical care that is provided by a registered nurse, physical therapist, occupational therapist or other skilled medical professionals. It is often prescribed as part of a care plan following a hospitalization.
Home care is beneficial to those individuals who are having difficulty performing various activities of daily living. They may need help with cleaning their house, doing laundry, cooking meals or getting ready for their day. To a person that no longer has the ability to drive, transportation to and from doctor appointments, getting groceries or running errands may be beneficial. Home care can be provided on a short or long-term basis for as little as 3 hours a day or as much as 24 hours per day, depending upon the need. These services do not require a referral or order from your physician and are provided by personal care or certified home health aides. Private duty home care is billed at an hourly rate and is covered only by long-term care insurance or veterans benefits, therefore leaving the cost to cash out of pocket.
Home health is regularly prescribed when a person has had a recent inpatient stay at a hospital, rehabilitation or skilled nursing facility. Home health can also benefit those who have had recent medication changes and are in need of education related to potential side effects, or need to be monitored to ensure the medication is effective. For someone who has shown a decline in overall physical functioning, physical and/or occupational therapy provided in the home can assist that person in regaining their independence. Since home health services are considered medical care, it is covered by medical insurance, including Medicare, Medicare Advantage Programs, Medicaid and private insurance.
At BiosHealth we provide a full menu of services and are here to assist you in deciding what is best for you or your loved one by providing free in home consultations to answer any questions that you may have.