Care Guide

It's Important to Care

Home care fulfills the desire of aging in place by keeping seniors safe, healthy, and active in the comfort of their own homes. It is also an opportunity to maintain their independence and have control over their routine.

Caregivers are given professional training which allows them to help with activities of daily living—light housekeeping, meal preparation, medication reminders, transportation, companionship, toileting, bathing, and dressing. They also protect seniors by observing and reporting to their family members any changes in health or a dangerous fall.

When to Start Care

There are subtle changes or incidents that occur that signal a need for aid. Subtle changes may include increasing forgetfulness or a reduction in attention to personal appearance. Serious incidents could be a fall or forgetting where they are and not knowing how to get home. The client and often the family share the burden of responsibility for finding the required support and care.

Unfortunately, most people don’t consider home care until a crisis occurs, and the family is left scrambling to find someone to take care of their loved one. More often than not, these emergencies could have been prevented if a caregiver was present to ensure safety at home.

Sometimes hospital stays are inevitable. Home care can help your family member ease their transition back home; a vital time in which seniors are more susceptible to unplanned hospital readmission. A study found that patients who take between three and five drugs were at medium risk of hospital readmission, while those taking over five medications were at highest risk.1

Aultru’s qualified caregivers work with client specific medication profiles to ensure they take all medications as prescribed. If a change in condition occurs, our nurses recognize medication side effects and can discuss the situation with the prescribing doctor. Aultru also partners with discharge planners to make sure that your family member receives the best care possible as they recover.

Two factors that can help determine if your loved one could benefit from home care:

  1. Home care can alleviate the challenges of daily tasks.
    If your loved one now finds daily responsibilities, such as cleaning their home or preparing meals, more challenging you may want to consider home care.

  2. Home care can empower your loved one to maintain their independence.
    If your family member is experiencing a decrease in general activity and encounters difficulties when running errands or getting around the house, then their independence may be compromised. Home care may serve as a beneficial solution by providing support that promotes autonomy.

Choosing Care

Home care agencies assume all responsibilities of a caregiver and are required to follow all applicable licensing and labor laws. They offer security and peace of mind by conducting background checks on all employees, while also training and supervising their caregivers. Agencies offer a backup caregiver when the primary caregiver cannot work. We also manage payroll and hold the insurance required (professional liability, workers’ compensation, and surety bond) to protect your family from financial and legal recourse.

The following guidelines can help with selecting a home care agency:

  1. Do your research. Evaluate the level of care your loved one needs, which may differ from what each agency proposes. Search online to find basic information about an agency and what separates them from other home care agencies. Important factors to consider:

    • What services are available and will they meet your family member’s needs?

    • What work background and experience does the agency’s management have?

    • How are their caregivers trained?

    • How is the quality of care measured and monitored?

    • What happens if something goes wrong?

    • Have there been any negative reviews or customer complaints?

  2. Ask for recommendations. A personal recommendation from friends, neighbors, or colleagues helps you find a home care agency you can trust. Also consult a doctor or nurse familiar with our industry for any leads.

  3. Interview the agency. Start making phone calls or set up an in-person interview to better understand how the agency operates. Before hiring one, compare answers from other home care agencies and rate how well they match the qualities that are most important to you and your family member.

We understand the importance of selecting the best home care provider. Take your time in investigating your options. Doing your own due diligence is essential, as not all agencies are the same. We are readily available to answer questions you may have about home care or Aultru.

Cost of Care

As per the 2019 Genworth Cost of Care Survey, US home care on a median annual basis is more affordable than nursing home care but a bit costlier than an assisted living facility.2

A private, one bedroom at a nursing home is almost double the price as home care. However, nursing homes are best suited for those who need 24-hour medical care and supervision.

An assisted living facility offers a housing alternative for older adults and similar custodial services as home care. Conversely, home care offers one-to-one care in a senior’s own home, while an assisted living facility in Nevada has no required minimum staff ratio.

The following guidelines are on how home care is paid for:

  • Medicare does not pay for non-medical home care services. However, in 2018, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) added non-medical in-home care as a Medicare Advantage Benefit. Since then, it has been approved in 2019 and is expected to be implemented in 2020.3 We keep track of the latest news in our industry and will update our site to underscore any significant changes.

  • Most HMO and PPO insurances are not accepted.

  • Medicaid and Medicaid Waiver Program acceptance differs in every state and county. Nevada accepts Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS Waivers).

  • Veteran’s Assistance may be accepted under specific circumstances.

  • Many comprehensive long-term care insurance plans are accepted.

  • Workers’ Compensation and Catastrophic Auto insurance are accepted.

  • Reverse Mortgages are accepted.

  • Most home care services are paid out-of-pocket by the seniors or families enjoying care.

Unless paying privately, home care reimbursement may be complex and requires in-depth knowledge to follow local, state, and federal laws, rules, and regulations. Our payment experts are readily available to answer questions or discuss concerns you may have to make your life easier.

  1. State Comparison of Staffing Levels. Argentum, July 2017.
  2. Genworth Cost of Care Survey 2019: Skyrocketing Care Costs May Make the Dream of Aging at Home More Challenging - Oct 16, 2019.” Genworth Financial, Inc. Newsroom, 16 Oct. 2019.
  3. “2019 Medicare Advantage and Part D Rate Announcement and Call Letter.” Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, CMS, 2 Apr. 2018.

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