In Home Care or Home Healthcare…What’s the Difference?

Although the two types of care sound the same, there are actually some big differences. It can be overwhelming to try and figure out exactly what type of care your loved one needs. Home healthcare is often utilized following a hospitalization or a stint in a skilled nursing facility. The goal is to help the patient get back to the level of independence that they enjoyed prior to the illness or injury. In home care is considered to be “custodial care” (non-medical care that assists individuals with acts of daily living.) Here is what you need to know about the similarities and differences between these two types of care.

Home Healthcare

  • Home health is ordered by the doctor when deemed medically necessary for patients that are home bound.
  • This can include physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, wound care, and more.
  • It is skilled care provided by nurses, therapists, or health aids with specialized training.
  • It is typically short term and helps the patient to regain their independence.
  • Home health is often covered by Medicare or insurance, although it can be paid for out of pocket as well.
  • Home health does not include transportation, cooking, cleaning.
  • Skilled professionals are allowed to administer medication.
  • Home health is typically not around the clock care or constant supervision

In Home Care

  • Trained caregivers provide companionship and assistance with activities of daily living
  • May include light housekeeping and transportation
  • Caregivers can prepare meals
  • Caregivers can remind patients to take their medication, but they typically cannot administer medication
  • If desired, you can have a 24hr live in caregiver
  • The cost is most often paid for out of pocket or by long term care insurance
  • Seniors who receive Medicaid benefits are sometimes eligible for some in home care, but
    typically it is a limited number of hours per week and not all in home care services are able to accept Medicaid clients.

We understand how confusing it be trying to make sure that your loved one has the care that he/she needs. We are committed to helping you navigate the world of long term care by providing guidance, resources and care options. Whether you are planning ahead or in the middle of a crisis, we are here to help.

Author: Stacy Gibson