Many people confuse the benefits available from Medicare with non-medical home care. In Colorado there are two classes of home care.
Class A, is considered Skilled and also referred to as Home Health or Home Care, it includes Nursing Services, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Speech Therapy, Medical Social Services and a Certified Nursing Assistant.
Class B, is considered non-medical Home Care and supports and compliments the Skilled Services of a Class A Agency, with additional hours to help seniors with Activities of Daily Living. These services are not covered under Medicare and therefore are private pay or may be covered under Long Term Care Insurance Policies.
Class A, Skilled Services; is designed to assist seniors with home care who are home bound, have been given a doctors script and will show improvement with skilled services. A senior must be over 65 years old to qualify for Medicare. Events that may trigger Skilled Home Health include; a fall that results in a broken hip or injured back, a serious UTI, Pneumonia, complications from one or more chronic diseases (COPD, Chronic Heart Failure, Diabetes, Cancer, stroke), issues related to ALS, Dementia or Parkinson's; anything that creates a hospital admittance that lasts for 3 or more days.
Whether you decide to go to the Skilled Nursing Facility or go directly home, most people find that the 2-4 hours/week that Medicare covers free of charge, is not enough care for a senior to fully recover. This is where non-medical home care, Class B comes in. Skilled Home Health for the most part does not help with Activities of Daily Living. To avoid a return to the hospital and stop the cycle, consider adding non-medical home care to your health care plan.