Paying for Home Care

How a Live-In Companion or Professional Caregiver Can Help You at Home

When faced with an elderly parent living at home, hiring a professional caregiver such as a home health aide or companion may be the solution.   Home care services enables the elderly to age in place versus seeking assisted living placement at a nursing home or assisted living facility.

Why Seek Home Care versus Assisted Living Placement?

To some individuals, hiring a caregiver means a family member can be the primary caregiver while overseeing the care of someone else coming into the home.

How do I pay for Home Care?

Payment for assistance with daily living is considered custodial care.  Custodial care is NOT covered by Medicare.  Medicare Home Health Services only covers short term intermittent care after a doctor writes a script for services.   A home health aide can assist with bathing three times a week covered by Medicare; however, it requires a skilled care at home such as home physical therapy or a visiting nurse.

Paying for Home Care Services for Assistance with Daily Living

Assistance with daily living such as assistance with bathing and dressing are typically paid privately; hence the term private duty.  Those who have insurance for long-term care, some policies pay for an in-home care or possible a portion of the cost.  It is best to review any long term care policy with your loved one to help determine coverage.  In some states, if the seniors qualify for Medicaid, he/she can get some hours paid from this government funded program.  There is also a non combative pension benefits for Veterans and their spouses called VA Aid and Attendance that can assist with cost for home care services.

Home Health Care Agencies and Nurse Registries are increasing and advancing in terms of caregiving.  Agencies provide caregivers both in nursing care and custodial care.  Its aim is to help people live fully, independent and dignified in the comfort of their own homes. If a family member is the primary caregiver, in-home care can give respite so the primary caregiver can find time for herself.

Hiring from an agency

Hiring a caregiver from an agency is what most people prefer. However, it is best to check them out first to avoid trouble in the future. Here are some tips:

  • Personality. It is important to find someone who will match the client’s personality. Some caregivers may have the training and skills needed but his/her personality may not click to the client. Your quest in looking for an appropriate caregiver for your love one is like looking for a partner in life. Their personality should compliment each other to have a smooth relationship.
  • Qualification and Experience. Caregivers from an agency is often skilled and trained. You just have to look for someone who has experience and qualification to care someone like your love one. For example, if your loved one has dementia, look for someone who has experience in taking care of dementia patient. Her experience from previous clients will give you idea of her qualification and experience.
  • Name of the agency they represent. It is necessary to get your caregiver from an agency whom you can trust. Proper evaluation on the agency is needed so you can avoid trouble. Here are the few questions you can check -out.
    1. How long has the agency been in caregiving business?
    2. Is it evaluated and accredited by a governing agency?
    3. Is it licensed by the state?
    4. Can they kept confidential information?
    5. How do they perform in a customer satisfaction survey?
    6. Can they give list of references whom you can ask questions? (Like doctors, hospital discharge planners or former clients)

The importance of finding an appropriate caregiver should not be taken lightly. Old-age is an honorable stage of life. Once our parent have reached this age, they are worthy of the best care and comfort. The time you will be spending with them in their old age is the last chance you have. The last time you will show how you love and honor them. Spending time with them is a valuable moment of their and your lives.

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