As most people age, they begin to require assistance for things they once used to do on their own or perhaps never had to do. The timing is different for everyone, but such a change can be gradual or happen all at once, so it’s best to be prepared with a plan for how you’ll care for your elderly loved ones when they require it.
Making a difficult situation more so, many seniors are averse to moving into a nursing home or assisted living facility. They prefer to stay in the homes they are familiar with and may have lived in for decades. They want to keep a sense of independence even as they age and daily life becomes more difficult. What’s the solution? For many, it’s home care for elderly. In their homes, seniors feel more at ease and just need an occasional bit of help with anything from grocery shopping to physical therapy.
This is where the benefits of home care come into focus. By bringing medical professionals and personal caretakers into the home, your loved one gets the assistance they need without having to leave the home they know and love; they get to keep their sense of independence, which can be a significant mental health boost.
Another benefit to home care for the elderly in their homes is that care is specific and scalable with each person’s needs. Nursing facilities require a serious commitment, whereas with home care, you can hire an agency to provide you only the care you need and only when you need it. If your loved one can’t shop for or cook meals, there are caretakers equipped to assist with those tasks every day. If the senior in your life is recovering from surgery, a medical professional will work with their doctor on a treatment plan and provide the necessary medication, therapy, wound treatment, or other required services for as long as needed. Many home care agencies also offer in-home hospice care, providing clients with comfort and a high quality of life in their last days.
With in-home care, you’ll have the peace of mind that your elderly loved one is happy and comfortable, yet still receiving the attention they need from screened and qualified professionals. Home care staff offer more than just health care services and assistance with activities of daily living; they also can provide seniors with social companionship and can lift spirits when a client is feeling lonely or down.
In some cases, the costs of home care may even be covered by Medicare. One agency that specializes in home care, Dallas-based Ultimate Home Health Care, explains that in order for home care to be eligible for Medicare coverage, a case must meet all of the following criteria:
- A physician must order the home health services.
- The service must be necessary and reasonable for treatment of an illness or injury.
- The patient must require a qualifying skilled intermittent service such as nursing care, physical therapy, occupational therapy, or speech therapy. Medical social services and home health aide services are covered only if the patient is receiving skilled nursing care or physical or speech therapy.
- The patient must be homebound.
- The patient must be an eligible Medicare beneficiary.
By now, the value of home care is probably clear: highly-skilled assistance when you need it, in a way that lets your elderly loved one hold onto their sense of independence and stay in familiar surroundings. It can bring you peace of mind and lessen the loneliness that many elderly often face as they become more and more homebound. Home care is a terrific solution to consider for many seniors with specific care needs that don’t require leaving the home and can be a more cost-effective alternative to full-time housing in a nursing facility.