There are a plethora of reasons seniors may prefer in-home care over other types of care providers. In the Orlando area, one factor may be cost. The average daily cost in 2015 for in-home care was nearly identical to that of assisted living, $116 for care in the home and $110 for assisted living. These average costs were well below the median for private nursing home care of $259 per day. In-home care allows seniors to stay in their comfortable and familiar surroundings rather than seek out facility-based care.
Here we review the common in-home care options in the Orlando area including details on what care types are accessible, patient reviews, and how to find the best in-home care for your needs.
Orlando area seniors have access to dozens of in-home care agencies. Their services are generally divided into two main groups; personal care and home health care. Most agencies have the resources to offer both care types. Providers are required by the state to maintain a certification and list their business with the Department of Aging and Disability Services Home and Community Support Services Agencies program.
To gain a better understanding of the in-home care experiences and needs in Orlando, we read the patient and family member reviews on SeniorAdvisor.com. Comments included:
Providing flexible hours and delivering on their promises. “I trust the office of Right at Home Orlando because the owner does what she promises. The caregivers are very knowledgeable. Right at Home was the only company that I could find that would provide evening and weekend hours,” wrote the child of a patient with Right at Home.
Reliable service that fits the budget. “The girl we have coming out is very nice. We get the same person all the time, and she is reliable. There have been no billing issues, and everything has worked out quite well,” wrote the child of a patient at Spring Hills Home care.
Agencies in the area also have staff available if you need help on short notice and can provide same-day assistance if needed.
Normal daily care, outside of any last-minute care needs, can be tailored to meet your desired schedule. Caregivers may be interested in respite care during a planned vacation or unplanned illness or personal time. You may also be searching for part-time care, such as a caregiver to come into the home for a few hours during the day to assist a loved one with meals, dressing, bathing, or other personal needs. Full-time or live-in caregivers are an option when the family caregiver is working full time or lives out of the area and cannot be the primary caregiver.
The best care plans are usually made up of several parts, giving you many different options for you or your loved one when care is needed. Some area resources to include in your care plan are:
Directly hiring a caregiver to help out, rather than working through an agency. Hiring directly allows you to pay a friend or relative the market rate for providing care and gives you sole control of the entire process. Beware that finding, screening, and vetting a caregiver can be time-consuming, and you will also be responsible for the payroll, tax, and insurance responsibilities of providing direct employment.
A combination of direct care and agency care might be the right combination for you. This allows you to pay a family member for being a caregiver, but to also offer them respite to manage their own health and needs.
Local concierge and online shopping services are a great time-management resource and can assist with things like delivering groceries, household items or taking care of pets.
Ensure that you find quality providers by doing research, asking for recommendations, and reading online reviews at the Better Business Bureau of Central Florida website.
Seniors on Medicare may qualify for assistance if they meet very specific criteria. They must choose a provider who has a Medicare certification, and have a doctor recommendation stating the senior is homebound and needs either occupational, physical or speech therapy, or access to skilled nursing care.
Options for paying for care privately could include using long-term care insurance benefits, or exploring a reverse mortgage on your home to gain access to funds.
Low-income seniors have additional options, like applying for Florida Medicaid or the VA Aid & Attendance pension, if they are military veterans or widows of vets who served during an active wartime.
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