At Provista Healthcare, we often field questions from patients and their loved ones about what exactly home healthcare is. There are many questions about how it differs from hospice care, who is it for, and what type of services are included in home healthcare. Today, we would like to clear up some of the misconceptions of home healthcare and bring some much needed clarity to the public.
Home Healthcare Misconceptions
There are many misconceptions about home healthcare. Many people have the wrong idea about what it is and who it serves. The first misconception is people who think that home healthcare is the the same as home hospice care. While there are healthcare agencies like Provista Healthcare that offer both, they serve different patient groups. Unlike hospice care, home healthcare is a curative based treatment similar to the care a normal patient would receive at the hospital.
In addition to misconceptions about what home healthcare is, sometimes people have a narrow view of what home health care can offer. Many people believe home healthcare only offers services to people who need ADL (Activities of Daily Living) assistance. While home healthcare agencies like Provista Healthcare do offer aides to assist patients with errands, medication reminders, meals, and other ADL tasks it is a part of the home healthcare umbrella.
The third common misconception about home healthcare is it’s only for older persons and patients on Medicare. The truth is Provista Home Healthcare serves adult patients of all ages with a variety of healthcare needs and health insurance providers. Home healthcare services many patients who are young and often in good health. The real questions you should be asking is, “when is home healthcare appropriate?”
When is Home Healthcare Appropriate?
Home healthcare is appropriate for anyone who needs recovery and rehabilitation. Many young, healthy adults use home healthcare to help them recover from injuries, especially sports-related injuries. Home healthcare offers a crucial service to these patients if they do not have a primary caretaker who can see to their needs throughout the day.
Home healthcare offers a similar service to adult patients who are recovering from surgery. When given the option of recuperating at the hospital or at home, most patients will choose to recover in the comfort of their own home. Home healthcare can help make surgery recovery at home simple and successful with trained medical professionals who can replace dressings, administer medications, and coordinate the patient’s status with the physician care team.
The other primary patient group for home healthcare are those diagnosed with non-hospice, chronic conditions. Examples of chronic conditions that can benefit from home healthcare include ALS, cancer, MS, Parkinson’s, and more. While chronic conditions require a higher level of monitoring and treatment, this can be done simply in the patient’s home with technology and the right medical professionals on the patient’s care team.
One of the biggest benefits of home healthcare is the reduced risk of re-hospitalization. This is a serious risk for many patients when they leave the hospital. Up to a quarter of patients show adverse effects within weeks of returning home from the hospital. And, the majority of the effects are preventable with proper care. A home healthcare service ensures patients follow the appropriate discharge plan and coordinate updates with the patient physicians. This leads to a better overall level of care, quickened recovery, and a reduced rate of re-hospitalization. Provista Home Healthcare boasts a 2% re-hospitalization rate.
Not All Home Health Agencies Are the Same
There are various types and levels of home healthcare. The range starts with home health aides who assist patients with ADL tasks to physicians who can make changes to a patient’s care plan as the patient’s needs change. Many healthcare agencies specialize in a specific niche of the home health field. Many only offer home health aide services, while others focus on treating specific injuries, surgeries, or chronic conditions.
Provista Healthcare offers the full spectrum of home healthcare services. And, because Provista Healthcare also includes Provista Hospice, we can provide a palliative bridge for patients in our care who receive a prognosis update. Provista helps make the transition easy to ensure a high quality of care for patients.
Home Healthcare Technology
As technology keeps improving so does in-home healthcare. Telehealth allows home care patients to see a medical professional quickly and easily from the comfort of their home. Likewise, tele monitoring allows a patient’s care team easy and quick access to a patient’s vitals without travel. These improvements in technology help decrease infectious disease exposure to at-risk patients. While any patient in recovery is at heightened risk for infectious disease, it’s especially sensitive for patients suffering from immunosuppressive effects.
Telehealth and telemonitoring also reduce the amount of travel a patient must incur. Transportation to medical appointments can be difficult if the patient has reduced mobility or doesn’t have access to reliable means of transportation. The other benefit is technology allows many patients to receive professional medical attention outside traditional office hours. A physician can be contacted overnight and have access to the patient’s current vitals, all without the patient leaving home.
The Home Healthcare Team
Because home healthcare agencies like Provista Healthcare serve a wide array of patients, there are many medical professionals that can be included in a patient’s care team.
Home healthcare aides help patients with their ADLs, light housework, and medication reminders. A home care aide is a great benefit to patients who do not have a loved one who is able to serve as an every day caretaker.
Nurses are the supportive backbone of home healthcare. They provide one-on-one patient care and coordinate the patient treatment plan with the patient’s physicians. Provista Healthcare’s in-home health care offers both RNs and LVNs to provide quality care of the highest level to patients.
Medical Social Workers
Medical Social Workers serve a vital role in home health patient recovery. They identify community resources like primary home care, sitter services, assisted living placement, long term planning, legal health related paperwork, and more on the patient’s behalf.
Recuperative therapy is large part of the recovery process for many patients. Provista Healthcare offers physical, occupational, and speech therapy professionals to aid in the recovery process. They help with body functions like balance, swallowing, and speech.
Home healthcare physicians make a difference when it comes to diagnosing and treating complications and adverse effects that come up as part of a patient’s recovery process. They help patients with diagnosis, medication changes, and guiding the recuperative journey.
How to get Home Health Care
If you are wanting insurance or Medicare to help cover the cost of home healthcare you will need a patient referral from your physician stating home health care is medically necessary. This will need to be submitted for insurance purposes. Provista Healthcare can help facilitate the process with your physician. If you choose to pay out-of-pocket for home health care, you can contact Provista Healthcare directly, HERE.
About Provista Healthcare
Provista Healthcare has been providing individualized home health and hospice care services to Texans for 15 years. We believe quality health care should adapt to meet the needs of every patient, including serving them in the home environment. We believe every patient is an individual, loved one, and community member and requires their own individualized physical, emotional, and spiritual support.