In-home health care tends to be a very popular option when it comes to senior care and with good reason. Most seniors would like to stay in their own home for as long as possible because they are familiar with the surroundings and it’s more comfortable overall. It also tends to be a little less expensive, especially in the Philadelphia area. In 2015, a private room in a nursing home cost around $350 per day, and assisted living was around $163 per day. A home health aide averages around $132 per day, which can be more affordable for some families.
This guide should help you understand what to expect when it comes to health care, how the people of Philadelphia view the agencies available, and how you can make in-home care a part of your daily schedule.
Philadelphia has at least 20 different agencies that offer in-home care services. These services are often split into two different groups with most agencies offering both groups. There is personal care or companionship that focuses on things like helping out around the house and there is home health care that focuses more on medical needs and daily tasks like bathing and getting out of bed. All agencies have to be licensed by the state of Pennsylvania and follow a set of rules and regulations.
In order to help get an understanding of the expectations of families around Philadelphia when it comes to home health care, we took a look at a few reviews from SeniorAdvisor.com. Here’s what they had to say:
Workers who truly care about their clients as well as treat them with respect: One sister of a client with Home Helpers wrote, “Danine treated my sister with dignity and kind care that was exemplary. She made sure Margery was treated with the utmost compassion possible which made her passing as dignified as it could possibly be. Danine always made sure that all of her needs were tended to quickly and thoroughly, and with her loving manner it made everyone in the family grateful that she was there.”
A competent and caring staff that makes sure schedules are kept and handled properly: Another client of Home Helpers said, “The administrative staff were friendly and easy to work with, and the caregivers they sent did a good job looking after my loved one.”
It was also important to users that agencies were able to provide someone quickly in case of an emergency or if a schedule needed to change suddenly. Even if you have a last minute need, don’t think that you can’t call one of these services as many are now equipped with emergency care providers.
This is a really important thing to keep in mind when you’re deciding what care to get for yourself or your loved ones. In-home care often works to fit with your schedule so that either you or your family member gets the care they need, when they need it. This is great for respite care when you need a break, have a vacation, or an obligation that takes you away from your caregiving duties. It’s also good if you have a full-time job on top of your caregiving so you can go to work and know that your family member is cared for.
In-home care can be thought of as one extra piece of your caregiving puzzle. There are so many options to make sure that no matter what you or your loved one has care whether there is an emergency or it’s just a routine day. There are a few other options you can add to your care as well:
Hiring A Caregiver on Your Own: You can keep total control of everyone who comes into your house by hiring your own caregiver instead of going through an agency. This is a good option if you want to make sure a family member who is providing care gets the payment they deserve. Keep in mind that an agency handles a lot of the paperwork and other things that go into hiring a caregiver. If you do it yourself, you will be in charge of things like interviews, background checks, insurance, and payment.
Combination of Agency and Your Own Hire: Nothing says that you can’t use a combination of both an agency and your own hired caregiver. This is actually great if you need to take a break or your regular caregiver can’t come. This way you have all your bases covered and never have to be without care.
Concierge Services: Caregiving can take a lot of your time and energy, and you might find that your other responsibilities fall by the wayside. Local concierge services can help you with things like grocery pick-up, housecleaning, and even paying your bills on time. You can check with places like TaskRabbit to hire someone to do errands around the house or find a local agency that lists their services online.
No matter what you do, make sure you use a reputable business so you get quality service and don’t waste your money. Ask friends and family for recommendations and check each place with the Philadelphia Better Business Bureau.
Medicare and Medicaid are two options for seniors that have a low income and not a lot of assets. Medicare has some fairly strict rules and you need to be under the care of a doctor who is willing to say you are homebound as well as need some kind of skilled nursing care like physical therapy. If you don’t qualify for Medicare, you can look into Medicaid to see if you can get any funds there. Plus, you can contact the Philadelphia Corporation For Aging for a whole list of services that include food programs, transportation, and mental well-being.
Privately, you can use a long-term insurance policy to cover at-home costs as long as that is covered under your contract. You can look into a reverse mortgage if you need extra cash, but you will have to be counseled by an HUD-certified agent as there are a fair amount of risks involved with this option.
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