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Home care typically involves health-related services that are delivered to you in your home and are ordered by your physician to help your recovery. Private care is a type of home care. If you need home care that extends beyond services covered by insurance, our Private Care services provide day-to-day support to help you continue to live safely and independently in your home.

With Relief Keepers Home Care, you can be sure that every member of your team – whether nurse, rehabilitation therapist, home health aide, social worker and others – is highly trained, trustworthy and professional. Every member of your team is fully screened and insured. They offer a level of skill that comes only with experience, and the compassion that comes with true caring.

  • How long the agency has been in the business of home care
  • Whether the agency is licensed, insured and bonded
  • If the agency contract with independent workers or if everyone is an employee
  • If the agency’s home health aides are certified
  • How the company screens employees and whether it performs background checks
  • If the agency provides continuing education for employees

When evaluating potential home care providers, ask about accreditations, licenses, and certifications. The full-service, certified or licensed home care agencies will have been reviewed and approved by the state, and must adhere to state and federal regulations designed to protect patient safety. Such agencies will provide careful supervision of all personnel, and perform pre-employment criminal background checks, drug screening, and reference checks on all staff.

When family or friends can’t meet all of a person’s care needs, there are basically two types of people who provide home care. There are paid healthcare professionals, who are state licensed, and work per orders of your doctor. These include nurses, physical therapists, or social workers. The second type includes aides, homemakers and companions who are there to help with daily activities so you can stay in your home, independently for as long as possible.

Home care services are usually provided by home care organizations. Home care organizations include: Medicare certified home health agencies; hospices; area agencies on aging, homemaker agencies; staff and private duty nursing agencies. Other companies may be utilized to deliver specialized services and products such as medical equipment and supplies, pharmaceuticals, and drug infusion therapy.

There are two types of home care services that you can find in most areas of the country. The first type of home care provides medical care at home and your doctor gives the home care company a plan and instructions for your care. Your treatment is provided by health care professionals such as nurses, physical therapists, speech therapists and social workers, as well as by home health aides who can help with bathing or dressing or using the bathroom while you are receiving home nursing or therapy services. This type of care is often paid for by Medicare, Medicaid or many commercial insurance companies. The services are usually provided by a Medicare or Medicaid Certified Home Health Agency, or a home care company approved by the insurance plan.

The second type of home care helps you with everyday activities that may be harder to do by yourself when you have an illness that may be getting worse such as heart disease or diabetes, and you do not always feel safe to do things like bathing or dressing or shopping by yourself and you want to stay at home as long as possible. These services are often called private duty or personal care and support services. These may be paid for by a long term insurance policy, Medicaid, or be paid for directly by you or your family.

Every person is different, especially when it comes to health and what type of home care is needed. The exact cost of care needs to be based on listening to you, your family, your doctor, and observing your individual situation.

We recommend an initial in-home care evaluation for each individual client. Often, these evaluations are done by the local Interim HealthCare office at no charge. Based on the in-home evaluation, a service plan is then developed to best meet the needs of the individual. It can include a little bit of assistance up to around-the-clock assistance.

Charges are fairly based on quality care and individual needs. Please give our Interim HealthCare local office a call to schedule an in-home evaluation or to request more information

Medicare, Medicaid, commercial insurance, and HMOs typically cover certified home care services when the criteria are met. Home care agencies will assist in determining your specific coverage and any co-pays. Private duty and nonmedical care services are usually on a private pay basis.

In order to receive home health care services under Medicare, the patient must require skilled, intermittent nursing care, physical therapy, or speech therapy, have a physician’s order for home health care, and be essentially homebound. Medicare considers a person to be homebound if leaving the home would require a considerable and taxing effort and if they have a condition due to an illness or injury which restricts the ability to leave home except with the aid of devices such as crutches, canes, wheelchairs, walkers, special transportation, or assistance of another person. Homebound patients may leave their home if absences from the home are infrequent or for periods of relatively short duration, or for the purpose of receiving medical treatment.

Relief Keepers Home Care performs a thorough screening on each patient care employee and contractor including:

  • Professional license check, if applicable
  • Criminal background check including fingerprinting
  • Driver license check
  • Two business and one personal reference required

All patient care employees and contractors are fully licensed or certified, as well as insured, bonded, and CPR-certified. Relief Keepers Home Care also periodically conducts in-services and trainings to keep our staff current in their skills and knowledge. Each employee goes through an extensive orientation and training program upon hire and their progress is closely monitored by their assigned supervisor.

All patients’ home health care needs are evaluated during the first visit by a RN or therapist. Under the direction of the patient’s physician and with input from the patient and family members, an individualized care plan is initiated. The care plan is continually assessed and updated as the patient’s needs change and as progress is made. All of this is documented in the patient’s chart.

The care plan is made in conjunction with the patient and family and is discussed thoroughly. Our staff ensures the family and patient understand the care that will be provided, how often, etc. Extensive training is done on medications, safety, disease management, emergency procedures, community resources, nutrition, etc.

An emergency plan is made and thoroughly discussed with the patient and family during the first visit and is posted in the home and included in the care plan. This is reviewed frequently with the patient and family during the course of our care in the home. An RN is on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to handle questions, problems, etc.

An individual’s status as either “homebound” or “not homebound” can sometimes mean the difference between being eligible for insurance-paid Home Care services or not. Homebound status is generally defined as:

  • People who leave home only occasionally and with difficulty, due to an illness or injury. They may need assistance or use an assistive device such as a walker.
  • People who are unable to leave home for casual outings or errands, or to participate in activities other than medical visits or religious services.
  • People who are physically and/or emotionally unable to receive care on an outpatient basis.

An in-home assessment is the only certain way to determine whether you are eligible for home care services covered by your insurance. Qualification standards for home care services vary by insurance company and plan. For Medicare, patients are generally eligible for home care if they:

  • Are homebound
  • Need intermittent, skilled nursing care, or therapy
  • Are under a physician’s care

Insurers other than Medicare may consider a need for assistance with personal care such as dressing or bathing may be sufficient justification for insurance-eligible Home Care. Of course, Home Care services may always be paid for on a private care basis. Sometimes a combination of insurance-covered services and private care services will best meet your needs. For help in discovering what you may be eligible for, please contact us at 718-812-6185. We’ll review the specifics of your situation, and advise you regarding your best options.

People of all ages with acute and chronic health care needs can receive home health care services. Home health care is for persons who require health care from a professional or who need supportive assistance in the home environment. The payer(s) for these services typically determines what type of care is covered and who qualifies. In most cases, medical orders from a physician are required for care. It is best to call your local home health agency and ask for assistance.

Home care services are often recommended by your physician or, in the case of hospitalization, by a social worker or discharge planner at the hospital from which you are being discharged. These individuals will generally initiate your referral to a recommended home care agency.

Alternatively, you may contact a home care agency at any time and ask for assistance in starting services. To request initiation of home care services with Relief Keepers Home Care, contact us either online, or by calling 718-812-6185.

After deciding that home care is the right option for them, many people ask why they should contract with an agency rather than hire an aide or nurse directly. The truth is that home care agencies provide significant benefits over direct hires in the areas that matter most to families:

  • Employer Obligations: By hiring an aide or nurse directly, you take on the legal responsibilities of an employer, including paying payroll taxes, workers compensation, and unemployment insurance. Working with a Home Care Agency alleviates you of these responsibilities.
  • Peace-of-Mind: The only background checks that come with a direct hire are those you conduct yourself. Home care agencies are required to conduct criminal background checks and screen their employees.
  • Security & Contingency: If your direct hire harms you, you’re on your own. In contrast, home care agencies are required to carry various forms of insurance to protect you. They can also quickly provide a replacement if your aide or nurse is sick, injured, or changes jobs.
  • Security & Contingency: If your direct hire harms you, you’re on your own. In contrast, home care agencies are required to carry various forms of insurance to protect you. They can also quickly provide a replacement if your aide or nurse is sick, injured, or changes jobs.
  • Training & Supervision: As with background checks, you’re responsible for training and supervising your direct hire. Agencies, however, have the experience, knowledge, and resources to ensure their workers are thoroughly trained in any services or tasks they perform, including safe infection control, falls prevention, emergency preparation, and personal care tasks.

These are only some of the challenges to hiring privately. With Relief Keepers Home Care, you do not have to worry about any of these issues.

Yes. Relief Keepers Home Care will schedule a visit, at your convenience to introduce the client and their family to the company. During this meeting we will explore the options the client has for services and payment. . We will research and contact different resources that may assist you with financial and other concerns.

Yes. Many agencies require their clients to have at least 7 hours per shift. Relief Keepers Home Care only requires a 4 hour minimum per shift.

Yes. Relief Keepers Home Care will make phone calls to the homes of each client if bad weather prohibits a care provider from providing services. If necessary, we will send someone to check on the well-being of the client.

Yes. Private Pay clients are allowed to adjust their scheduled hours whenever needed. Giving Relief Keepers Home Care as much notice as possible ensures that we will be able to make the necessary changes.

Relief Keepers Home Care provides worker’s compensation for all employees. We also make it mandatory for those on contract to carry insurance that will cover them in the event of an injury/accident while at work.

Relief Keepers Home Care’s office staff is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. When the office is closed, there is an on-call person available to help you.

No. Relief Keepers Home Care is here to meet your needs, and as your needs change, so will the services you receive.

Yes. Our care is always determined by what you need. Our trained staff will work with you to create a plan of care specific to your individual needs.