Home Care vs. Home Health


HomeCare vs HomeHealth blue house with a heart in the middle

For aging and homebound individuals, home is the best place to remain as functional and independent as possible, with the highest degree of security, comfort and dignity.

When individuals hear the words home care and home health, some mistakenly think the two are synonymous, however, home care and home health are distinct types of care. Home care is non-medical assistance emphasizing companionship while home health is a physician-ordered plan of care provided at home.

Homeland at Home is proud to now offer both, providing the communities we serve with a continuum of high quality care.

Let’s explore the differences further.

Home Care

Susan Minarik, RN, Executive Director of Homeland Hospice, HomeHealth & HomeCare stated, “Home care is supportive care. Caregivers provide assistance with the activities of daily living, such as preparing meals, running errands, light housekeeping, medication reminders, assisting with bathing and dressing, and providing transportation to doctor appointments. The goal is to improve our client’s quality of life while ensuring safety in the home.”

Homeland HomeCare only employs Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) who are managed by licensed nurses. With bonded and vested employees, we can ensure peace of mind and quality care 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Recently, the Pennsylvania Department of Health issued a new regulation allowing home care aides to be trained to do additional tasks in the home setting. Minarik added, “The additional tasks taken on are a decision made by each agency. Homeland HomeCare is ahead of the game. As soon as we received word about this option we started educating our CNAs to become Direct Care Workers. They are trained on a per task/per visit basis.” Some of the additional care that can be provided include pic tube care, ostomy care, and medication administration.

Home care is typically paid by the individual receiving care.

Home Health

Home health is ordered by a physician, typically after a hospital stay, an onset of a new diagnosis or an exacerbation of an existing illness. Lora Bierce RN, WCC, COS-C, Director of Homeland HomeHealth explained, “Home health care is monitored and implemented by a team of medical professionals including nurses, physical, occupational, and speech therapists, social workers and CNAs. Services are normally covered by Medicare or the individual’s private insurance.”

Homeland HomeHealth’s staff has expertise in wound care, cardiac care, fall prevention and rehabilitation services.

Bierce added, “Home health is a multi-disciplinary plan of care. Each patient is different and receives a specialized plan of care that fits their needs.”

Two home health programs will be added to Homeland at Home by the end of summer – palliative care and telehealth.

“Palliative care is a specialized medical treatment for individuals who have been diagnosed with a serious illness. We will have dedicated staff members cross-trained in both palliative and hospice care. So, if the need to transition patients to hospice arises, the patient will be able to have the same caregivers they’ve already come to know and trust,” remarked Bierce.

In addition, Homeland HomeHealth will be the first agency in the region to offer state-of-the-art telehealth monitors to its patients. Bierce added, “We are excited as this new service has the ability to reduce re-hospitalization by more than 20%.”

The Homeland Difference

In an age when for-profit senior care chains dominate the market, Homeland – a 501(c) non-profit organization – remains steadfast with a keen focus on our local communities while delivering a compassionate, comprehensive array of professional services throughout the region.