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In-Home Healthcare - An Overview

In-Home Healthcare ~ An Overview

As people age, the prevailing thought for many is to remain at home as long as possible. But what happens when one or both spouses find it difficult to perform activities of daily living (ADLs) such as bathing, dressing, cooking or grocery shopping? For some, the solution is moving to an assisted living residence where your daily activities are coordinated for you; for those finding it difficult to leave the comfort of home, there is in-home care where the professionals come to you. The services provided are home healthcare, non-medical care and often, companionship. There are two main options for home healthcare; working with an agency or hiring a private home healthcare staff.

Option A: Agency

Working with a reputable agency can afford piece of mind. The person in charge of your case will provide staff (Certified Nursing Assistants) and create schedules according to your needs. If you are unhappy with the service a CNA provides the agency will handle their removal and replacement. If a CNA is unable to work their shift due to illness or other, the agency will work to find a replacement.

Typically, agencies can charge anywhere from $25-$31 per hour for an approximate cost of $3,000 - $3,720 at 4 hours per day for one month, to $6,000 - $7,440 at 8 hours per for one month.

Option B: Private Caregivers

Private caregivers are those who have full-time jobs with NHC, Tide Point, etc. but have furthered their education to receive a license to work as an independent caregiver (Certified Nursing Assistant). Often these individuals work as a team and coordinate schedules to work a private case. Unlike an agency, if you are unhappy with a private CNA, you handle the removal or replacing unless you work with a private team where there is a team leader. This is your go-to person who will schedule on your behalf and replace someone if necessary. This is really the only way to go when working with private CNAs. If deciding to use the private route, referrals are essential.

Costs associated with private CNAs are less than agencies as the agency fee is removed from the equation. Hourly rates range from $14-$20 p/h depending on the case and of course are often negotiated, particularly for 24-hour care. Approximate ranges are $1,680 - $2,400 at 4 hours per day for one month to $3,360 - $4,800 at 8 hours per day for one month.

Skilled nursing if required is administered via a doctor’s order after a hospital stay and is covered by Medicare and supplemental insurance.

Whether you work with an agency or with private caregivers the fact remains that personalities of multiple individuals are constantly interacting and there will be conflicts. Caregivers are there to provide respite for the spousal caregiver as well as impeccable attention and care to your loved one. Communication is very important. Be certain to specify ground rules in the beginning to avoid future misunderstandings.

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