“My dad lost his way home when he got back from the park, again,” Shawn complains to his friend,
“I have told him so often not to go outside alone, but he doesn’t listen.”
“Shawn, you should not blame him for that.” Replies his friend,
“Your dad has the right to go outside. It’s just that you can’t be with him all the time.”
That’s true. Like many middle-aged people, Shawn has his own family and is busy working most of the time. However, time never waits for anyone – now, his aged father needs him more than ever.
“Maybe it’s time to consider home care?” Shawn’s friend suggests, “My mom was in the same situation, so we hired a care worker for him. It does cost quite a bit, but it’s all worth it.”
Home care could be the silver lining to your situation if you are just as clueless as Shawn. Don’t worry. This article will guide you through what home care is and everything you want to know about the service.
What are home care services?
Home care service isn’t hiring someone to take care of your home. It is a kind of professional support that allows a senior to stay safely at home.
Many families hire a home care worker rather than send their parents to a long-term care facility. It is because:
Seniors can maintain their independence while living in familiar surroundings, with family members able to visit at any time. Some seniors and their families prefer to interact only with a caregiver who has been assigned to them.
There are different home care services: Personal care and companionship, nursing care, and home health care. Each serves a different purpose and is provided by caregivers with different qualifications. Now, let’s see what these care services are.
Personal care and companionship
Just as the name suggests, personal care and companionship support involve helping the senior with daily activity and supervision. In this type of home care, the care levels can range from weekly meal preparation to incontinence assistance.
Personal care aides can be hired privately or by agencies. Such home care service can meet many seniors’ needs, such as:
– Getting dressed, bathing, and grooming
– Meal preparation
– Basic housekeeping
Who provides it:
Personal Support Workers (PSW) are eligible to provide such support. The care can be provided by shift or full time based on clients’ needs. Personal care and companionship do not require a doctor’s prescription, but they require the worker to possess a PSW certificate.
Personal care and companionship support are usually charged by the hour. According to the statistics of Ontario, the average cost of PSW is between $28 to $36 hourly. Usually, there will be a minimum hour requirement for each shift, either 3 or 4 hours per visit.
Depending on the agency, the cost would be mostly privately paid and rarely covered by long-term care and health insurance.
Who’s suitable for personal care and companionship
Seniors who have no severe medical concerns but need help with basic daily activities can consider personal care services. It also works for the seniors who often feel isolated, just like Shawn’s father. After all, meeting psychological needs are as important as meeting basic living needs for seniors. See our blog on “Senior Isolation” for more details.
Nursing care is also known as home-based skilled nursing or hourly nursing. This type of service is provided for those with more complex and ongoing medical demands but still prefer receiving care in the home setting.
Nursing care service includes specific medical care such as IV therapies
(administering shots), wound dressing, palliative care, pain management, etc.
Who provided it?
Nursing care is provided by Registered Nurses (RNs) or Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs); the nurse will use clinical criteria to create a nursing diagnosis list. Like personal support service, nursing care can be provided by shift or full time. However, it needs to be prescribed by a doctor since it involves medical practice.
The cost of home-based nursing care is more expensive than personal support care. The average cost of nursing care in Ontario is $55 to $88 per hour, and again, it has minimum hours per visit, just like personal care.
You can choose to pay by yourself. Various sources such as health insurance and work benefit can also cover the cost. So, check the policy before hiring a nurse. It may save you some bucks.
Who’s suitable for nursing care
Persons who have specific long-term medical needs would be suitable for nursing care. The concerns include but are not limited to diabetes, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and the need to administer medication, feeding tube care and ventilator care.
Home health care:
Home health care is more physician-directed than the other home care services, which involve physical therapies, occupational therapies, medical social work and short-term nursing services. It is performed on a relatively short-term basis than the other two, and it can be stopped as soon as patients’ goals are met.
Who provides it?
Since home health care is more medical-centred, it can be provided by licensed professionals such as physical therapists, registered nurses, occupational therapists and so on, depending on the needs.
Home health care is usually provided hourly or by session. It also required a doctor’s prescription to receive specific therapy.
The average price of home health care in Canada is around $125 per hour. In most cases, the cost can be covered by health insurance or private insurance.
Who’s suitable for home health care:
Home health care may benefit someone who has recently been wounded and requires rehabilitation. It is also appropriate for individuals who have recently been discharged from the hospital or are recovering from surgery. After their urgent medical needs have been met, patients may seek nursing care or home care.
Home care services provided cares that can be divided into different types based on different needs. Personal support and nursing care are provided on an ongoing basis, while home health care is for those who have recent injuries and need short-term therapies. Hiring a caregiver could be stressful sometimes, but CareStory Home Care is here to provide the best service and give you relief. In our next few blogs, we will talk about the tips and things you should know in the recruiting process. Stay tuned!