What’s the difference?

It can be difficult to realize that an aging parent requires assistance.

Providing care ourselves is often something we would like to do. But, this becomes difficult with job, family, and other life commitments competing for our time. Living far away from loved ones in a nursing home reduces social interaction and is usually a difficult transition. If we can’t provide the care they need, we want to ensure that the best possible care is available. This can be a daunting task. It can be difficult to navigate the options among care agencies and decide on the best type of care for loved ones.

One important thing to consider is the type of care needed. Two possible options are medical care or companion care. Both types are valuable services, but each provides a different type of care. Finding the right elderly companion care service is possible with the right care plan. With the right information, we can choose the best and most appropriate care for your loved ones.


Medical Care for Seniors

In-home medical care focuses on providing services to help seniors who are struggling with health conditions. It can help seniors meet specific medical needs and activities. It can also assist with activities of daily living (ADLs), such as bathing and dressing. A team of licensed medical staff usually provides the care. This team may include a nurse, certified nursing assistant, physical therapist, occupational therapist, speech therapist, and a home or personal health aide. 

Medical conditions that may require this type of care include heart conditions, osteoporosis, Parkinson’s disease, care following surgery, arthritis, and breathing problems. This type of care is often covered by Medicare or private health insurance.


Medical Care Services Provided by Nurses

Nursing staff can provide a variety of medical services to clients at home. This can help seniors stay at home while managing chronic health conditions, as well as recovery after accidents and illnesses. Care is usually provided by a registered nurse, licensed practical nurse, certified nursing assistant, or home health aide (under the supervision of a nurse).

Some common services include:

  • Monitoring vital signs
  • Observing a client’s health and watching for any changes
  • Providing dressing changes for wounds or incisions
  • Medication monitoring or administration
  • Managing medical devices and treatments (catheters, feeding tubes, etc.)
  • Assisting with personal care skills (bathing, dressing, toileting, etc.)


Medical Care Services Provided by Rehabilitation Professionals

For patients who need rehabilitation but can’t travel to an outpatient clinic, home health therapy is a great option.

Physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy can all be provided within the client’s home. Physical therapy (PT) can help clients walk, move safely around their homes, and build strength and endurance. PT can help older adults with exercising at home. Exercise is important for maintaining balance, muscle strength, and safety within the home.

Occupational therapy (OT) can also help patients at home. OT helps clients regain independence with ADLs (activities of daily living) following an illness, accident, or hospitalization. ADLs include bathing, dressing, grooming, eating, and toileting. OT can also check the home environment for safety and make recommendations as needed. OT can also help clients increase muscle strength, coordination, and balance to improve safety with ADLs.