What Is Companion Care?
Companion care is used to describe the companionship and help with errands and light household chores, typically provided in your home by a paid home companion.
Home companions allow family members or others who might care for you on a regular basis to have needed breaks.
Besides spending time with you, home companions will often:
- Run errands and shop for you
- Drive you to and from doctors’ appointments
- Perform light housekeeping and cleaning
- Prepare or help you to prepare meals
- Give you medication reminders
Companion care is typically for seniors who are healthy and independent enough to stay in their own homes. Home care agencies provide companion care, but companion care can also be provided by relatives, friends, neighbors or others on a paid or volunteer basis. Companion care can also be provided to residents of assisted living facilities and nursing homes.
Companion care is different than non-medical home care, which helps seniors who need help with routine tasks that they used to be able to do on their own such as bathing, grooming, mobility, and managing and taking their medicines.
What Is Companion Care Like?
As you age and have a harder time getting out of the house, you may begin to feel isolated and even lonely. A home companion will visit you on a regular basis and spend time with you. They can also help you to get out more by taking you to the grocery store, doctors’ appointments, or to social events.
If you don’t feel like going out, they will usually run errands and take care of your shopping for you. They will also help you with housekeeping, laundry and cooking. It really depends on what you need and want.
Home companions do not provide medical care, although they can do things like remind you to take your medications and help you to do exercises and stay fit.
Is Companion Care Right for Me?
Consider these statements below to determine if they describe you:
- I am still relatively healthy.
- I like having my own living space.
- I like being independent.
- I do not want to leave my home.
- I prefer to live on my own, but do not have a relative or friend who can stay with me all the time.
- I need help getting in and out of the bathtub or taking a bath or shower.
- I need help getting dressed.
- I need assistance with personal grooming.
- I get my medicines mixed up or can’t remember when to take them.
- I can no longer cook or need help preparing meals.
- I can no longer drive or can only drive very short distances.
- I no longer feel safe in my home.
- I feel isolated in my home.
If all or most of the Independence statements apply to you, but not the Daily Living statements, then Companion Care may be a good option for you.
If most or all of the above Independence and Daily Living statements apply to you, and you do not need regular nursing or medical care, then consider these options:
- Non-medical home care if you are able to stay in your home
- Assisted living if you are unable to stay in your home
If most or all of the above Independence and Daily Living statements apply to you, and you also need regular nursing or medical care, then consider these options:
What to Expect from Companion Care?
Home companions will spend time with you and do things with you that you enjoy doing, such as playing games, going for walks, or taking you to family and social events.
Their services may vary, but will typically include:
- Running errands
- Shopping for you or taking you shopping
- Driving you to and from doctors’ appointments
- Light housekeeping and cleaning
- Preparing or helping you to prepare your meals
- Reminding you to take your medication
Home care agencies typically charge for companion care based on an hourly rate. Some also require a minimum number of weekly or monthly hours.
Since companion care is a non-medical service, it is not covered by Medicare. The care is usually paid for by the senior receiving care or by their family. Some long-term care insurance may also cover or partially cover companion care services.
According to Genworth’s 2016 Cost of Care Survey, the National Daily Median cost of in Home Care (also known as Homemaker Services) in the United States is $125 per day.
Introduction to Columbus, Ohio and Surrounding Areas
Columbus, the state capital and largest city in the state, is located in central Ohio on the Scioto River. Originally settled by Native Americans, the area that became Columbus (named after Christopher Columbus) was settled by white explorers in the 1700s and made the state capital in 1816. Roads, railroads and the Ohio Canal energized the city; during World War II, aircraft manufacturing brought additional growth. Today, Columbus is a fast-growing, major American city with a population of more than 700,000 and a strong economy that is not dependent on any one industry. Its leading employers include government agencies and manufacturers of transportation equipment, textiles, metals and consumer goods.
Columbus Symphony Orchestra, BalletMet, and Opera Columbus brighten the arts scene. Popular museums include the Columbus Museum of Art, the Center of Science and Industry, and the home of satirist/cartoonist James Thurber, all located downtown. Upper Arlington has the Wexner Center for the Arts (a work of art unto itself) and the Ohio Craft Museum. On the east side of the city is the Martin Luther King Arts Complex, which offers exhibits and performances showcasing the talents of Columbus's African-American community. The Jack Nicklaus Museum, in the Ohio State University sports complex, chronicles the career of the great golfer from Columbus. On the north side, the Ohio Historical Center houses a museum focussed on Ohio history, along with a library and archive helpful for genealogical research projects. An hour away in Wilmington, Williams Memorial Park hosts an annual festival saluting the birthplace of the banana split.
Columbus Sports and Leisure
Columbus is home to the NHL's Columbus Blue Jackets, who play at 18,500-seat Nationwide Arena. The lack of a league franchise in football, baseball and basketball is more than made up for by the Ohio State Buckeyes, whose nationally-ranked programs in football and basketball have rabid local support. During the football season, legendary Ohio Stadium seats more than 101,000 fans. In baseball's minor leagues, the Columbus Clippers are the triple-A affiliate of the New York Yankees. Other Columbus teams include the Crew (Major League Soccer) and the Destroyers (Arena Football). For major league sports, Cincinnati (baseball's Reds, NFL's Bengals) and Cleveland (baseball's Indians, NFL's Browns, NBA's Cavaliers) are both less than a 2-hour drive away.
There's plenty of outdoor recreation available in the central Ohio area. Columbus has world-class golfing, with three courses within a 1/2-hour drive ranking among the top 100 according to Golfweek Magazine: the Golf Club (ranked #7) in New Albany, Muirfield Village Golf Club (#8) in Dublin and Double Eagle Club (#28) in Galena. In the winter, skiing is popular and accessible. Mad River Mountain, 41 miles away in Zanesfield, has a 1,460-foot mountain elevation with a 300-foot vertical drop, with over 20 trails for skiing or snowboarding, and a terrain park and a tubing park. The Seymour Woods State Nature Preserve has more than 100 acres of wildflowers, oaks, sycamores, elms, and other trees with hikable trails. Blendon Woods in Dublin offers activities and solitude in a 650-acre park with forests, 11-acre Thoreau Lake, and a 1.2-mile trail specifically designed for walking dogs.
Columbus at Night
Columbus has an energetic nightlife, with the most popular bars and dance clubs scattered downtown, along High Street and in the Brewery District.
America is discovering Columbus: the city ranked #8 by BestJobsUSA.com on their 2002 list of the Best Places to Live and Work in America; #21 by Forbes on their 2004 list of the Best Cities For Singles; #15 by Ladies Home Journal on their list of the Best Cities for Women.