The simplest definition of home care is just as it sounds: care and services provided at home. There are no age restrictions; home care can be for infants all the way up through the oldest old at the end of life.
What does home care cover? Just as it encompasses the entire lifespan, home care comprises every possible service, from skilled medical tasks — like IV therapy or wound care — to the most basic help tasks that keep people at home, such as setting the table, bill-paying, or assistance with bathing. Hospice and palliative care services at the end of life can also be provided at home.
When it comes to paying for home care, services are not always covered by insurance; many families must pay out of pocket. However, there may be some types of financial assistance available; check the Administration on Aging’s Eldercare Locator to learn more.
Also, remember that bringing strangers into your home or that of a family member’s (even if they are caring professionals) is not always an easy adjustment. Though it sounds harsh to say so, a new home care provider is essentially a stranger for the first few days and weeks. It will take time for trust to be built and for the provider to learn the preferences of the individual receiving care. Family members can ease this adjustment period by sharing their loved one’s habits, routines, likes and dislikes with the caregiver.
Learn more about home care services and search for options in your area here at the site.