Home Health Care FAQ

You Have Questions. Aurora Health at Home Has Answers.

If you haven’t received home health care before, you probably have a lot of questions. Reach out to us and let us put your mind at ease. We are available 24/7 to answer any questions or concerns you may have.

Getting Started with Aurora Health at Home

What services does Aurora Health at Home provide?

Learn more about who we are, including our team members.

Who can receive services from Aurora Health at Home?

Our team members and trained health care staff help people of all ages, and we work with a range of insurance. If you have Medicare, most home health care services are only covered if you’re homebound. But you don’t need to be homebound to receive medical equipment, including infusion supplies and devices for respiratory therapy. Hospice has its own, separate requirements.

Other insurance plans often follow Medicare’s lead, but the details vary. We can help you check your coverage. Learn more about insurance coverage and paying for home health care.

What is skilled care?

When your doctor prescribes home health care for you, it’s for skilled care services. These services can include skilled nursing and/or skilled rehabilitation. For care to be considered a skilled care service, it must require the expertise of a qualified health professional such as:

  • Registered nurse (RN)
  • Licensed practical nurse (LPN)
  • Physical therapist
  • Occupational therapist
  • Speech-language pathologist

Skilled providers perform services such as wound care, IV therapy and speech therapy. They also provide medication management (if you are taking five or more medications) and patient education to help you eventually manage your health independently.

What does homebound mean?

When we talk about home health care, the word homebound does not necessarily mean you’re bound to the place where you live. It’s true that some people do have to stay in their residences at all times because of a medical condition. More likely, you can leave home at times, but a medical challenge makes going anywhere a taxing effort.

Maybe you need the help of another person or medical equipment (such as crutches or a wheelchair) to get out the door. Or your doctor may feel that your condition could worsen if you leave. No matter the medical reason for your homebound status, you may leave home from time to time for reasons that include:

  • Medical treatment
  • Short, nonmedical absences, such as for religious services
  • Adult day care

Sometimes homebound status is temporary, such as a recovery from surgery. At other times it lasts longer, such as when you’re living with a chronic condition.

Where can I receive my home health care?

Aurora Health at Home provides home care anywhere you live in Eastern Wisconsin, including:

  • Private residences
  • Assisted living facilities
  • Nursing homes (hospice care only)

How soon can my home health care begin?

Once we receive a referral from your doctor, your first home health visit takes place 24 to 48 hours later.

What to Expect from Aurora Health at Home

What can I expect at my first home health care visit?

Your first visit may last anywhere from 1 to 2 hours. The nurse or therapist will perform a thorough assessment of your health. Together, you review:

  • Care prescribed by your doctor
  • Your current medications
  • Schedule of visits and care
  • Any questions you or your family members have

How often will my home care nurse or therapist visit?

Medicare defines home health care as intermittent, or part-time. Depending on the reason for your home care, the schedule for visits varies. Wound care may require daily visits, while physical therapists may only need to visit twice a week. Your team lets you know what to expect during your first home care visit. It’s all based on your health and your doctor’s order.

Will my nurse or therapist help me with housework and personal care?

Aurora Health at Home does provide certified home health aides to assist you with personal care such as bathing, grooming and dressing. However, the service these aides provide is separate from the skilled care administered by your nurse or therapist. Most insurance companies, including Medicare, only cover care from a home health aide when it’s in addition to a skilled care need.

Keep in mind that you may have to pay out of pocket for home health aides. Your insurance may also arrange a home health aide from another agency, even if you get skilled care from Aurora Health at Home. If you have questions or concerns about a particular service, make sure to contact the agency providing it.

How long can I receive home health care?

At Aurora at Home, home health care is transitional care. Our goal is to support, educate and guide you until you’re back on your feet. Medicare also recognizes home health care as temporary, requiring doctors to recertify their patients every 60 days.

Communication

How does the Aurora Health at Home team work with my personal doctor?

When you receive services through Aurora Health at Home, your care is a team effort. Your personal case manager coordinates with your home health providers and doctors to ensure everyone is on the same page. The case manager keeps your doctor involved and informed of your progress and any concerns that may arise.

How am I monitored between home care visits?

Aurora Health at Home offers telehealth monitoring for patients who qualify. We provide instruction and easy-to-use equipment so we can monitor your vital signs and symptoms between visits. Our trained telehealth nurses address any changes or concerns immediately. Learn more about our Telehealth program.

Is there someone available to help me if I have a problem between home care visits?

Yes. An Aurora Health at Home nurse can be reached 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to answer your questions and address your concerns. Call 800-862-2201.

Send Us a Message

Reach out to us with your questions about Aurora Health at Home.

Join Our Team

Aurora Health at Home is looking for compassionate home health team members.

Make a Difference

We’re looking for compassionate hospice volunteers.

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Advocate Health at Home provides home care and therapies in Illinois.