Home Health Care
Providing quality and cost effective service to patients
Home health care services in United States have been greatly developed in the provision of medical equipments that are durable and in the provision of complex therapies. Many Americans can access home health care services by the help of government reimbursement policies which require patients to be bound at home and also for those under medical direction need intermittent services. Home health care services are management by home health agencies, stakeholders, state and Federal regulators and legislators, families, patients and consumers.
All the parties have different interests but all are commonly interested in the provisions of high quality care to patients and ensuring the patients are safe. Home health care service compared to nursing homes and hospitals offer lower costs of services making it to be a fast growing health care service provider in the US larger healthcare industry Marrelii and Artress, 2008 pp 45).
The three most common services offered by home health care are professional care for the disabled and the elderly, home infusion therapy and skilled nursing. Other services include aiding chemotherapy, rehabilitation serves and administering antibiotics.
The home health care has faced serious challenges that affect its finances in the recent past years. The sectors greatly suffered from the effects of the Balanced Act of 1997 in terms of its finances. Another challenge facing the sector is the shortage of home–health aides and registered nurses and their high turn over rate. These are the aspects which affect the provision of cost effective and high quality care in home health care. With the growing need of home health care services since the start of the 2000s, there is need to stream line the industry for the provision of high quality services which area cost effective.
In the provision of quality care, the home health care industry develops telehomecare through the use of internet–bases and telephone based communication. Through such a mechanism the health care providers will not have to travel but still stay in touch with patients. From this strategy, high quality service will be provided and at the same time save clients from paying highly for the services they receive.
Improving home health care technologies leads to the improvement of efficiency through communication and access to information. Technology enables patients benefiting from home health care to be sassed, diagnosed, order mediation and give advance instructions. Technologies also help in the coordination of treatment, assessment of a patient’s outcomes as well as increased accuracy of payment.
The measurement of the costs of home health care services can be determined by comparing it with other healthcare service providers. Alternative and cheaper programs need to be developed by home health care providers which are of high quality.
One alternative is the provision of readily available service from a patient’s family instead of being hospitalized for services that can be given at home. The health insurance like Medicaid and Medicare should reimburse the services provided by the home health care especially those which are expensive. Clinical interventions and diagnosis of infection at the home setting encourage high quality service provision. Early discharge of patients from hospital leads to cost saving. There is need to provide appropriate care for a diagnosed health condition. The right treatment enhances quick recovery, wastage of cost and increase patients’ safety (Marrelii and Artress, 2008 pp 456).
Marrelii T and Artress, P (2008) Handbook of Home Health Standards: Quality, Documentation, and Reimbursement, Publisher Mosby, pp 456