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What Is Home Health Care Medical Equipment

Aug 16

Home health care is medical care provided at home for people with a chronic illness or injury. It is usually covered by Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance plans.

To qualify, you must be deemed “homebound” by your doctor (meaning leaving home would require substantial effort and be risky). Home health agencies must also be Medicare-certified.

Dietary Assessments

Dietary assessments are used to identify barriers to service and elicit information related to the person’s food intake, ability to purchase or prepare meals, and appetite or changes in appetite. They are a key component of the comprehensive assessment conducted by a trained staff member with each AAA and subrecipient who receives congregate or home delivered meals. This dietary assessment is documented by the screener and the person receiving meals on Form 2272, Determine Your Nutritional Health Checklist and Handout.

Participants in the focus groups viewed several e-DA tools that allow for self-administered 24-hour dietary recalls and/or food frequency questionnaires (FFQs). They indicated that a variety of factors must be taken into account when selecting a tool including cost, participant and interviewer burden and accuracy.

Most participants agreed that FFQs should be flexible in terms of the amount of information requested and provide the option of identifying a pattern of eating such as skipping meals, eating at home or dining out. They also indicated a desire to see a visualization of the results as graphics or tables which would facilitate discussion with clients during consult visits.

Laboratory Tests

Home health care clients can receive many of the same diagnostic and health condition monitoring tests they would receive in a clinical lab without leaving their homes. These tests are regulated by the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA 88) and are verified by professional accrediting organizations to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Medical advances have made point-of-care testing (POCT) devices widely available to consumers. These handheld devices can be used at home or work to monitor a range of conditions and provide alerts when a change in results is detected.

While these tools can help to increase access to test results for some individuals, they cannot replace guidance and treatment from a healthcare professional. In addition, these tests can be prone to error, especially if they are not correctly handled or stored. For this reason, at-home blood testing is best reserved for those who can receive supervision and education from a healthcare practitioner on how to perform the test properly.

Medical Equipment

Northeast Ohio Home Health Care clients often require medical equipment and supplies such as first-aid kits, mobility tools (like wheelchairs or beds) or specialized dietary aids. Having these items ready in advance of a hospital discharge can improve an individual's comfort and ensure they get the care they need once they return home.

Seniors and family caregivers can visit local home healthcare agencies that are Medicare-approved to buy these items or they can also purchase them at drugstore chains, big box retail stores or even resale shops like Goodwill. Some resale shops may also offer loyalty programs and rewards points that can help reduce costs.

In addition to home health services, many seniors rely on durable medical equipment such as walkers, wheelchairs or oxygen concentrators in order to live independently at home. To learn 3 ways to get home health equipment at the best price, click here.


Home health care allows seniors to stay in their homes and avoid a hospitalization or nursing facility placement. It includes skilled services like wound care, as well as non-medical home care services such as help with bathing or meal preparation.

Home healthcare is typically prescribed by a doctor, and Medicare covers most visits for up to 60 days per “episode.” Private insurance, long-term care insurance and veterans’ benefits can also pay for home health care.

Several home care franchisers and independent agencies have launched transportation lines of business to meet the need for safe, reliable and convenient rides. These include Omaha, Nebraska-based Right at Home and Los Angeles, California-based 24Hr HomeCare, which have forged relationships with ride-hailing companies Uber and Lyft to coordinate rides for their clients, who may be headed to medical appointments or for social events such as church services. This helps reduce missed appointments and improve outcomes.