What is the Difference Between Medical and Non-Medical In-Home Care?

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When it comes to ageing in place, there are a variety of resources available to support seniors. However, many people are unsure about the differences between services, especially when it comes to medical and non-medical in-home care. Both provide essential support in the home, but they serve different purposes.

Medical Home Care

Medical home care is often recommended for seniors who need medical assistance following an illness or injury, upon returning home from the hospital, or when managing chronic conditions. Care is provided by a nurse or other licensed medical professional.

Services Included in Medical Home Care

Medical home care may include services such as:

  • Medication administration, including IV infusions or injections
  • Pain management
  • Care for tracheotomies, catheters, feeding tubes, or ventilators
  • Wound care
  • Post-operative rehabilitation

This type of care is prescribed by a doctor and allows seniors to recover in the comfort of their own homes more safely and effectively. The home health provider ensures they are following the established treatment plan and can identify potential problems or complications.

Learn More: Recovering After Surgery – Home Care vs. Rehab Facility

Non-Medical Home Care

Non-medical home care focuses on supporting seniors with activities of daily living and maintaining their independence. Unlike medical care, it does not require a doctor’s order and can be scheduled for a few hours a week or several hours per day, depending on the individual’s needs.

Services Included in Non-Medical Home Care

Non-medical in-home care may include services such as:

  • Light housekeeping
  • Meal preparation
  • Assistance with bathing, dressing, or toileting
  • Errands and outings
  • Medication reminders
  • Nighttime and wake-up routines
  • Companionship
  • Respite care

Caregivers tailor care to each senior’s unique needs, allowing them to function independently as much as possible while offering the appropriate level of support. They can also spend time with ageing adults reminiscing, playing games, or discussing current events to provide socialisation and companionship, reducing loneliness and isolation. However, they do not offer direct medical care.

Combining Medical and Non-Medical Home Care

There are instances where a senior may receive both medical and non-medical home care, especially if they have recently been ill or are recovering from surgery. A medical caregiver assists with their rehabilitation and medication administration, while a non-medical caregiver helps with tasks around the home that they may not be able to perform on their own yet. There can be some overlap in services.

Non-medical home care can be extremely flexible to fit the senior and their family’s needs and goals. Services can be scheduled for times when other family members are unable to be there or when there is the greatest need for assistance.

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Understanding the differences between medical and non-medical home care is essential for making informed decisions about the best care for your loved ones. At From The Heart Home Care, we provide both types of services to ensure that seniors receive comprehensive, personalised care that meets all their needs. Whether it’s medical support or assistance with daily activities, our goal is to help seniors stay healthy and safe in the comfort of their own homes.

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