What Is Non-Medical Home Care?
Non-medical home care, sometimes just called home care, is for anyone who needs help with routine personal care tasks that they can no longer handle on their own such as bathing, getting dressed, and going to the bathroom.
These are basically the same services that you would receive in assisted living, only they are delivered in the comfort of your own home. Non-medical home care gives family members and others who might care for you on a regular basis an opportunity to take breaks.
However, just as the name indicates, no medical care is provided with non-medical home care.
What Is Non-Medical Home Care Like?
If a home care agency provides your care, agency staff will work with you and your family to plan and schedule your care. Then one or more home care aides will be assigned to work with you, depending on your needs.
You may only need help a few hours a day several days a week, or you may need it most of the day every day. If you need help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, then you may need a live-in home care aide.
Regardless of how many hours of care you need, the care professionals who work with you will get to know you and your routines. And they’ll help you to do things you have to do on a regular basis like taking a bath, getting dressed and moving around so that you can stay in your home.
The biggest benefit of non-medical home care is that it provides you with the personal care assistance that you need to continue living in your own home. It also can ease the minds of family members who may worry about your care and safety when they can’t be with you, or when they live far away.
Non-medical home care is also less expensive than assisted living, which provides you with similar services in a residential facility, rather than in your private home.
Is Non-Medical Home 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 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 non-medical home care is a good option for you if you are able to stay in your home.
- If you are unable to stay in your home, then consider assisted living.
If most or all of the above Independence and Daily Living statements apply to you, and you do need regular nursing or medical care, then consider these options:
- Medical home health care if you are able to stay in your home
- Skilled nursing care if you are unable to stay in your home
If all or most of the Independence statements apply to you, but not the Daily Living statements, then consider these options:
What to Expect from Non-Medical Home Care?
Non-medical home care typically includes assistance with the following:
- Getting dressed
- Oral hygiene
- Moving about in the home
- Managing and taking medicines
Non-medical home care may be delivered in conjunction with other types of home services, such as companion care, in which a home companion spends time with you and helps with household chores, cooking, errands and transportation; and medical home health care, which is when you receive care from medical professionals like nurses and physical therapists in your home.
The costs of non-medical home care can vary depending on where you live and the amount of care you require. Home care agencies typically charge this care based on an hourly rate. In general, the costs of non-medical home care are lower than most other care options, including respite care, assisted living and skilled nursing care.
Since this type of care is non-medical, it is not typically covered by Medicare when delivered alone; however, some or all costs may be covered when provided in conjunction with doctor-prescribed medical home health care. Otherwise, home 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 non-medical home care services.