Home care services variety from medical care to assistance with regular household chores. If you are thinking of receiving home care services, ask these questions to choose the best provider according to your needs.
If you are recovering from surgery and need long-term care for a chronic illness – or if a loved one is going through a similar situation – you may be interested in home care services. Home care services range from trained care provided by nurses, occupational therapists and physiotherapists to support at home; for example, to clean, cook and run errands.
Whether you’re planning to get help from a home care agency or hire a home health aide, knowing what questions to ask can be useful to make sure you get quality assistance.
If you are thinking of hiring a home care agency, consider the following:
Does the agency have state authorization? Most, but not all, states require that agencies have state authorization and be reviewed regularly. Check with your state’s health department.
Is the agency certified by Medicare and meets federal health and safety requirements? If it is not, ask the reason.
What kind of employee background check is done? Can the agency provide references? Request a list of doctors, hospital discharge planners or other professionals who have experience with the agency.
If you are thinking of hiring a home health aide, consider the following:
What are the credentials of the assistant? If he says he has authorization, consult with the agency that grants it.
Can the assistant provide references from at least two employers? Review them carefully.
Ask the doctor, social worker, hospital discharge planner, and family and friends of your loved one or yours for recommendations.
Quality of the medical attention
How does the agency train and supervise caregivers? Does the agency offer continuing education?
Are caregivers authorized, accredited and insured?
Do agency employees seem friendly and helpful?
Does the home health assistant have anaffirmative attitude?
Do you and your loved one feel comfortable with the home health aide?
How does the agency handle expenses and billing? Request information about all services and fees, as well as detailed explanations of all costs associated with home care.
Does medical insurance or Medicare cover all agency fees? Check what type of coverage your medical insurance offers and make sure you understand well what the criteria that Medicare requires are. For example, do they demand that your loved one be homebound?
What financial assistance resources does the agency provide, if necessary? For example, do you have a payment plan?
Request details about costs and payments in writing.
If you are thinking of hiring a home health aide:
How much does the assistant charge for home health services? What services include those fees?
What happens with the payment of sick leave, vacation days or holidays? Make it clear how many vacation days and sick leave are allowed and what days are considered holidays.
Will you have to take care of Social Security and other wage withholdings?
Understand the services
If you are thinking of a home care agency or a home health aide, you could ask these services questions:
Will you receive a written care plan before the service begins? The care plan should contain details about the medical equipment, specific care needs and responsibilities of the assistant or
home health care near me. It should also contain information about the doctor, as well as update frequently.