More than 100 years ago, people in rural areas relied on traveling doctors. The doctor came to people's homes for treatment. As much as we thought that method was in the past, it is now coming back in a new and improved way. Medicare and many insurance providers prefer to have skilled professionals provide care in people's homes, instead of making them stay in the hospital. Skilled nursing, medical rehabilitation, and education are now covered for many people who are home-bound. Two experienced at-home care providers--Colleen Sailer and Eileen Hecht--join the Pulse to discuss why the trend is going that way and what types of services are actually covered by Medicare and insurance.
Healthcare treatment in the home is much cheaper than care in the hospital, and research shows it can lead to a faster recovery. More often, Medicare and insurance providers prefer to have patients complete their recover in the comfort of their own home rather than staying in the hospital. In-home care does not apply for everyone; for example, it is not for long-term care, end-of-life assistance, or for those who are well enough to rely on outpatient services. It is restricted to patients who are unable to drive, but well enough that they don't need to go into a nursing home.
Home care services tend to include skilled nursing care--which support patients with IV antibiotics, catheters, wound care, blood draws, and education about medicine--and medical rehabilitation including Physical, Occupational, and Speech therapies. Medicare and many insurance providers will cover up to 60 days of care, with an extension available if needed, although most patients do not need the entire 60 days.
The home care process begins with a visit and referral from a primary provider, and be followed by an at-home assessment by a home care nurse. They can evaluate what treatment is needed, how much time may be needed for treatment, how often, what time of day, and whether the patient is too sick or too well to quality for home care. In those cases, the primary provider is notified to explore alternative options.
Perry Home Care begins June 14th, 2019, to extend care opportunities for patients in Bureau, Marshall, Putnam, and LaSalle counties. Colleen Sailer and Eileen Hecht are happy to answer any questions about the program for patients and families who may benefit from Home Care services.