When asked where they want to age, more and more seniors agree that home is where their heart is. In 2014, AARP conducted a survey and found 71 percent of adults aged from 50 to 64 want to stay in their current home versus other senior living options. In the next age category of 65 and older, this number increased to 87 percent. Lubbock offers plenty of resources to help seniors age comfortably in their home. Seniors can save money by living at home instead of a nursing home, which is another benefit.
The Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS) licenses and certifies in-home care agencies.
You can verify all licenses on the DADS website.
The state offers in-home help for some low-income seniors and those at risk of having to go into a nursing home.
There were more than 814,000 home health aides in the US in 2016.
Texas has one of the highest populations of home health aides with more than 67,000.
In 2016, the average salary for a home health aide in Texas was $20,550.
In 2016, the median cost of homemaker services in Lubbock was $107 a day. This average equals $3,241 monthly or $38,896 annually.
Homemaking services help seniors with typical household chores that may start to get harder with age such as cleaning, running errands, shopping, preparing meals, laundry, organization, and washing dishes. Additional homemaking services provide assistance with:
Personal hygiene and getting dressed
Socializing with engaging activities such as letter writing and games
Taking prescription medications
Caring for pets and plants
Checking for safety hazards
Communicating with the senior’s family to give updates
Homemaking services are an excellent choice for individuals that can manage their health but may need some assistance around the house to live at home. This service also provides regular companionship.
If you need some medical care, you may want to consider hiring a home health aide. The services for a home health aide average the same as homemaker services in Lubbock at $107 a day. If you compare this average rate to the nursing home rates in Lubbock, you will see that you can save a lot of money. The average cost for a semi-private nursing home room was $155 a day, and a private room averaged $220 a day. When you figure these costs, you could save $18,000 - $41,000 a year depending on the room and nursing home.
Home health aides also perform non-medical chores like the homemaker service. However, they are trained to monitor health conditions and can check blood pressure, take temperature, redress wounds, dispense medication, and aid with walking and mobility tools such as a walker.
State home care agencies typically employ home health aides. They are required to complete training requirements set by the state. Aides must complete both classroom and clinical experience under the supervision of a registered nurse. Home health aides are trained to move patients safely, monitor for infections, perform emergency procedures, and assist a senior with nutrition.
There are different levels of care to meet the needs of every situation. Home Health Care Agencies will work with you to create a plan and schedule to suit your needs, and you can update as your needs change. Different levels of care include:
Respite care gives your regular caregiver a break or covers when he or she is unavailable, which can be a few hours, days, or weeks. Because this is a short period with little commitment, you can use this as a trial period to see if there are other caregivers and agencies you would like to hire in the future.
Part-time care is regularly scheduled care for either a few hours daily or a couple of days each week. This care typically provides assistance with light cleaning, laundry, meal preparation, and grocery shopping. Part-time care is a good option for seniors that don’t need a lot of medical attention but require assistance with household chores or companionship.
Full-time care is similar to part-time care but is the typical 40 hours a week. Many families will use this care for their loved one while they are at work. You can also use this care for overnight to prevent falls in the middle of the night.
Live-in care is best for seniors that need constant, supervised care, but do not want to live in a nursing home. Usually, multiple caregivers will divide day and night hours.
Your first decision is if you want to hire your aide yourself or work with an agency. One benefit of hiring an agency is that they handle all the taxes, paychecks, insurance, and licensing requirements, which can be confusing if you are not familiar with the process. Plus, an agency has several aides, so it is easier to find a replacement quickly when there is a schedule conflict.
If you want to hire directly, you do get to pick the person you want. You can even choose to hire a family member. Remember as the employer you are in charge of taxes, payroll, and insurance.
Ask around for referrals to get your search started. You should also check for online reviews to find some feedback. You can also check out the Better Business Bureau’s website to review rankings and see if there are any standing complaints.
Your long-term care insurance policy should cover some or most home health care expenses. Your doctor will most likely need to prescribe these services as needed for your health. Low-income seniors may also be eligible to receive home health services through Texas’s Medicaid Program. If you were a wartime veteran or a widow of a wartime veteran, you may be entitled to a VA Aid & Attendance pension to help cover your home health expenses.
There are other options if you do not have insurance or qualify for the above benefits. If you own your home, a reverse mortgage pays you the equity in your home. You can also terminate some life insurance policies early for the benefit payout. However, both of these options have several implications you should consider, so you will want to do your research and speak with your financial planner or attorney before making the decision.
Find assisted living in Lubbock near you.