When searching for San Diego Home Health or in-home skilled nursing services, keywords to look for are health care or home health. To be considered health care, preserving someone’s physical and mental well-being has to be through the services offered by medical and allied health professionals. Allied health professionals (distinct from medicine, dentistry and nursing) cover a broad range of services ranging from diagnostic, technical and therapeutic to direct patient care. Examples include Occupational Therapists, Physical Therapists, Clinical Psychologists, Dieticians, Paramedics and Health Administrators. Non-medical Caregivers are not considered allied health professionals, so the term health care does not apply to their services.
What services can home health provide? Some examples are physical therapy, wound care or medical monitoring (i.e. blood pressure or blood glucose levels). Anything that penetrates the body, such as injections, feeding tubes or catheters would be deemed medical, where someone who is properly trained or “skilled” is needed.
Medicare is the principle payer for San Diego home health care/skilled nursing services. These services are available under parts A and B. In order to qualify, a person must have a skilled need, must be homebound and there must be a plan of care ordered by a Physician. Monies are typically provided for a period of up to 60 days. If the patient recovers sooner, then money may have to be reshuffled to other patients who are not responding as well. At the point where the patient does not respond or improve, no more Medicare money is forthcoming. After Medicare cuts off, a person continuing to need long-term care services must find sources other than Medicare.
For more information on how Medicare works with your specific case, you may contact HICAP, the Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program. They give FREE Medicare and health insurance counseling here in San Diego through the California Department of Aging. For an appointment, call (800) 434-0222. There are also free legal services for senior citizens through the same program. This is very helpful if you have questions about powers of attorney and estate planning. For an appointment, call the metro office at (858) 565-1392.
The plan of care ordered by the Physician usually includes limited custodial care (non-medical home care) services to help the care recipient remain in the home. These would include a home health aide for an hour or two a day to help with ADLs (activities of daily living); bathing, dressing, toileting and transferring. If additional hours are needed for areas such as safety supervision, incontinent care or medication reminders, professional caregivers from a San Diego home care (distinct from health care) agency, are used.
(Source: San Diego Home Health Care Resource)