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Is it correct this benefit is limited to a 60 day "episode", or is it common for people to receive this benefit over a long period of time by continual "recertifications" of their homebound status?

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These answers are enlightening. As many times as we've had home PT and OT, not once has anyone raised the issue of renewing longer than a month or so.

In reality, we've been relieved when they've finished as home visits can be disruptive, and we had to plan around their visits. But I would like to get a home nurse on a regular basis and had planned to go the private duty route.

Lest someone chides me for not researching this, I'll plead "no time to research the issue", which is a legitimate issue for our situation. However, I'm adding this to my several page to-do list to see what I can learn.

Since the issues of concern are primarily pulmonary, I'm also going to ask our pulmonary doctor when we see her later next month (she's so overextended that it takes 2 - 3 months to get an appointment). Some pulmonary support isn't easy to get though. I've tried for the last few years to get Dad into the pulmonary rehab program, but Medicare criteria are so rigid he never qualifies.

Thanks to Riverside for raising this issue and to Pam and Mom for sharing your experiences.
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Hello Riverside
My mother had home health for about 7 years. My aunt has had it about 5 years now. Yes they have to recertify every six weeks or so. A RN comes to their home to recertify. This has to be done after subsequent hospitalizations as well. Usually a LVN makes the weekly visits. They usually fill the pill boxes. Currently I'm filling the boxes for my aunt but if the dr approves they will reorder the meds as needed and fill the boxes. These visits can be once a week or several times a week depending on the authorized need. Wound dressing for instance can be several times a week. To follow the drs orders is the idea. In these two cases the patients were home bound and lived alone. My mother had OT for years otherwise she would have lost the use of her right arm. They both have had PT several times a year. Additionally my mother had an aid who came three times a week to take her vitals and bath her. My aunt had the three times a week also but has been cut back to twice a week. I've been given several reasons why. While the nurses and aids seem to come and go and you would prefer them to be more consistent they can be very useful in an elders ability to remain living in their own home. There have been instances where their assistance has been extremely helpful and at the least provided a few minutes of social interaction. As far as I know we never have had a problem with theft or abuse. And for the record neither my mother or my aunt wanted the aid but both grew to appreciate the aid most of all. A shampoo and a bath are hard to beat.
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Here's what we found out- mom had a stroke, spent a short time in the hospital. We took her home and we called the nearest visiting nurses association. They came out, did an assessment and got the written orders for a weekly nurse visit for 60 days, plus PT and OT. Somehow it got renewed and lasted a total of 9 months.
We also split the week among 4 siblings because she could not be left alone, she was on a walker, she could not see well or hear well and she was delusional. We tried our best to keep her home, and we were fortunate she agreed to try assisted living.
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