Frequently Asked Questions
Will my insurance cover my home care?
This is one of those tricky questions and the answer is really depends on what type of insurance you are asking about. The Affordable Care Act provided short term coverage covered by your health insurance, but generally that is going to be medical home care and will need to be prescribed by a physician. Long Term Care coverage will cover home care, but you will want to check with them as to what they will require before you start services to prevent you from having to potentially switch companies.
What about Medicare?
Very similar to health insurance, Medicare covers for a short term and generally only when you are being discharged from a hospital or rehab center as the method for closing out the continuity of the care that started with your hospitalization. Your social worker or case manager will generally be requesting home health upon discharge and they will help you get a company that is Medicare approved, meaning a medical home health agency vs. non-medical home care.
I’m a veteran and have services through the VA. Will they cover services?
While this should never be a question and the answer should always be yes, you will need to reach out to your VA rep to see what services can be covered and if it will require a specific type of agency. We have had veterans who submitted their invoices and were covered and others that had to work through the VA to get specific coverage.
What’s the difference between Medical & Non-Medical Home Care?
Arizona is one of the few states with an unregulated type of home care, and that’s non-medical. Non-medical home care should basically be focused on what are called the Activities of Daily Living, or ADLs. This would be help getting up, help with bathing, hygiene and dressing, assistance with meal prep and light housekeeping, assistance with laundry and bed linen changes, assistance with exercises ordered by a physical therapist, grocery shopping, transportation to doctor appointments, medication reminders (medication must be setup already). No nurses are involved as none of these services are deemed medical and therefore a nurse is not required. While there are no laws preventing a non-medical home care agency from providing medical services, it is unethical as that agency should just get licensed as a medical home health agency.
Are there different levels of care and cost?
This is a popular question and will vary by agency. For us if you signed up for “hands off” companion care and you or your loved one had an immediate need for hands on care, is the caregiver expected to perform that care or simply call emergency services? This is a challenging question and why our services include all aspects of care at one rate. We expect our caregivers to recognize potential issues like blood sugar abnormalities, neurological issues like a stroke or TIA symptoms, cardiac or pulmonary issues like elevated or depressed blood pressure or inability to take proper breaths. To us knowing these things is vital as we believe companion care can become full care in a matter or moments and the longer it takes for care to begin the worse the result could be.
What if we don’t hit it off or connect with the caregiver?
We tell people all the time that selecting caregivers is part art and part science. We make sure they are all capable, background checked and experienced with the right mindset, but then it’s trying to match personalities or demeanors. A client that is a lifelong Phoenix Suns fan may not connect with a lifelong Los Angeles Laker fan (but who would?). If something of that nature occurs you simply let us know and we pick someone who will be equally qualified but maybe more towards your personality. There’s never a problem with that and the caregivers know. We don’t connect with everyone, so it happens to all of us.
How do I know if home care is right for me or how many hours I need?
This is really the reason why we have the no cost, no obligation initial consultation. You should be able to bounce ideas off the wall with someone who knows the various levels of care, how to determine who fits in which level and most importantly will be honest with you to your benefit, not ours. We don’t want to do a single unnecessary hour of care beyond the minimum and give you the truth even when it sometimes isn’t what you want to hear. If we start working with you and things change the caregivers will let us know and we will reevaluate when needed and let you know what we are seeing. Honesty is vital when you are talking about care and we pride ourselves on looking at your well being over our business with you.