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Does Home Health Care Save Money?

When you and your family are looking at the costs of long-term care for a loved one, it can be difficult to determine the best way to ensure quality care while also keeping costs under control. However, research shows that home care is an effective method of reducing health care costs.

The Home Care Association of America’s (HCAOA) new report, “Caring for America’s Seniors: The Value of Home Care,” highlights this aspect of in-home care.

Home Health Care Costs and Benefits

There is a growing greying population in the United States and a projected 20 percent of people will be 65 and over by 2030; that’s a 13 percent increase from 2010. Currently, 40 percent of adults over age 65 need assistance with activities of daily living. In other words, more people are going to need care in the home to do things like prepare healthy meals, get dressed, and more, and the majority of people consistently say that it is their first preference to remain in their homes as they age, rather than relocate.

The average cost of home health care can be relatively affordable when compared to other options for long-term care. Even having a family member step up to help an elderly loved one can cost them lost time at their jobs, which is a hidden cost to what can seem like savings.

When someone receives quality in-home care to help them transition after a hospital visit after a diagnosis of a chronic condition or degenerative disorder, or to support home health services, it can keep them safe, healthy, and engaged with their friends and family. The companionship provided by a caregiver can make a difference in the 43% of elders who report feeling lonely, which has been shown to have detrimental effects on physical well-being too.

Home Care to Reduce Health Care Costs

We’ve all heard about the mushrooming costs of health care. In-home care can be part of not just potentially saving individuals money on out-of-pocket health care costs, but also overall costs in the country. According to the HCAOA’s report, in patients living with dementia, 66% of those without professional in-home care services were admitted to the hospital compared to only 58% of those with these services.
In addition, people who engage home care services require 25% fewer doctor visits. When there is decreased demand for these services and people invest in private-pay home care, public health care costs are reduced.
For example, it is estimated that more than 60% of national spending on nursing home care is paid for by Medicare, Medicaid, or another public funding source. It appears that as much as $25 billion in hospital costs in 2008 was saved in the U.S. thanks in part to the increased use of home care services. For those with a Medicare co-pay for hospital admissions, home care services that successfully postpone or eliminate a visit to the hospital can also be a savings.

Less Stress, for You and Your Wallet

If you’re considering your care options, whether for yourself or a loved one, contact your local Homewatch CareGivers for a free consultation. Our professional caregiving staff can find a solution that works for you and your budget.

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