I currently work with an in-home care company. We deal with the medical assistance program in our state. We do not deal with the medicare program as our licensing would need to be different so my question is: Recently my in-laws and a friends mom were told by the local hospital that if they receive home care from them, they cannot even go out to eat at a restaurant with family or a friend or they will lose their in home service. I do not understand that "rule". Is this a stipulation of the Medicare program or something the hospital system itself is requiring? Either way we are creating home bound seniors instead of seniors that receive some in-home services so they can remain involved in their communities as much as possible.

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Yes this is correct. The patient must be home bound to receive Medicare paid homecare. They are "allowed" to go out to doctor appointments as that is within the guidelines but if they can go out to dinner they can go out to outpatient clinics for therapy and Medicare will not pay. Once our patients (I am an old home care nurse) got yo that level of function we discharged them, as did home physical therapy and the rest of the homecare disciplines.
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As above, senios can receive in home services if they are homebound by impairments. If the can get dressed, and into a car to go eat, why can't they be gotten to a PT appointment?
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Yep. In home service from Medicare is for housebound persons. There is a description of this on the Medicare website. My MIL has Parkinson's and is receiving home care after hospitalization, so we have had same discussion. Because the services are at $0 cost unlike many other services and more expensive to deliver, there are restrictions on who qualifies. Check Medicare dot gov and search home health services. A quite specific explanation there. Otherwise everyone would opt for home services and the cost would collapse the system.
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