When doctors or caseworkers refer a patient to home health or hospice care, they usually speak to the family about potential home health and hospice care providers they recommend. You should consider those recommendations seriously, as you cannot simply search online for “hospice near me” and go for the first option you see. You must gather as much information as possible before you make this big decision for your loved one.
Indeed, the essential services provided by hospices and home healths are essentially the same, which may lead you to wonder whether or not it really matters which one you choose. However, there are some differences that may not initially be obvious, so you must really do your homework.
To help you out, here are five factors you need to consider when choosing a home health or hospice care for your loved one:
There are three possible locations for hospice care – the patient’s home, the hospital, or a nursing home; home health can be provided at home or assisted living. Not many hospices actually have inpatient facilities. Most of the time, hospice care is given by an independent agency that sends out nurses to their patients.
To make things clearer, the location that’s important is not really that of their office but where their nurses are. When you call a home health or hospice provider, know how far away their nurses live and what areas they cover. You also want to make sure that you’re choosing one with an on-call nurse close to you so that they can help you immediately when there is a crisis.
Licenses and Certifications
Depending on the provider you choose, your loved one could be cared for by specialists and experienced specialists or nursing assistants who need more training. You will want the best possible care for your loved one, so make sure you ask about their staff’s licenses and certifications. This is especially important if the patient requires medication management or if they have wounds that need regular cleaning.
Types of Care Provided
The patient’s physician will give you an idea of the type of care needed by your loved one. This should be one of your top considerations when choosing a home health or hospice care provider. You can ask the hospices and home healths you’re considering about their services. For some, there are ‘levels’ of care that include specific services for each level. This is why it’s advisable that you get more information about the specific programs or kinds of care provided to make sure that your loved one will receive the best one for them.
For instance, Gateway Home Health in Colorado offers programs tailored to the patient’s needs, from home health care and soon, hospice care. There are also specialty programs like orthopedic, wound care, fall prevention, and transitional care programs facilitated by highly-trained and certified professionals on our team.
Your loved one will probably need medication while receiving home health or hospice care. With this, the home health or hospice provider you choose must have a good relationship with a pharmacy so that you won’t have a problem in case you run out of medicine and need to have the prescription refilled quickly.
Contracted Insurances and Medical Groups
It is good to know whether the home health or hospice care provider works with Medicare or other types of insurances. For this reason, it’s best that you know about the type of insurance they accept or any medical groups they are associated with before you decide on the provider.
At this point, you now realize that the choice of home health and hospice care has a significant impact on your loved one and your family’s quality of life. The location, the type of care given, and of course, the quality of service rendered by trained professionals are all big determining factors to help you choose the right home health and hospice care for your loved one!
Gateway Home Health provides home health and soon hospice care, specialized programs, and senior health services in Colorado. Our experts are licensed and certified on the national best standards of home health, ensuring the best possible care for the patient. Get in touch with us today to see how we can care for your loved one!