By: Ann Aksamit, BSN, RN, CHPN — Home Care and Hospice Manager
Providing care for patients in their own home, has shown to be a very effective way to treat many ailments and post-operative situations. In the last year, Sheridan Memorial Hospital (SMH) Home Care clinicians took care of 245 patients making 4,865 visits to patient homes with great results.
Each November, we celebrate the millions of nurses, home care aides, therapists, social workers, chaplains and volunteers who make a remarkable difference for the patients and families they serve. These heroic caregivers play a central role in our health care system and in homes across the nation.
To recognize their efforts, we call upon all Americans to commemorate the power of caring, both in the home and in their local communities, and join with SMH Homecare and Hospice and the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC) by celebrating November as National Home Care and Hospice Month.
I can’t say enough about our caring, dedicated home care staff – they do so much for our patients – going above and beyond every day. During the past 20 months they have tirelessy traveled throughout our community caring for people in their homes.
Home care is the preferred patient setting for health care since the home is the best setting for providing health care to increasing numbers of patients. Not only can care be provided less expensively in the home, but evidence also suggests that home care is a key step toward achieving optimal health outcomes for many patients. Studies show that patients who have home health visits have improved quality of care. These visits can also reduce hospitalizations due to chronic conditions or adverse events.
Home Care services are high-tech and the workers are very skilled. An added benefit is that the home tends to be a more relaxed, less restricted environment where patients can feel comfortable and more in control.
Home Care Services through SMH
SMH Home Care provides care tailored to an individual’s needs.
Some of our skilled services include-
- Skilled Nursing and Home Health Aide services:
- Pain and symptom management, medication management, IV infusion therapy, central line care, wound and ostomy care, observation and assessment of the patients’ condition, training and education for patients and their families.
- Physical and Occupational Therapy:
- Assisting home care patients to attain their maximum level of safety and independence. Therapy can follow orthopedic surgery or be done after an acute, chronic illness when a person becomes weak or experiences a decline in functional status
- Speech Therapy:
- For patients with speech and swallowing problems and cognitive therapy, this can be follow-up after a stroke or other brain injury.
To receive SMH Home care, individuals must meet certain eligibility requirements to qualify for insurance coverage. Patients may also elect to private pay for Home Care services. A person’s eligibility and individual circumstances will be assessed to determine the appropriate level of home care services.
Home care services may be requested by: physicians and healthcare providers, patients, family members, friends, representatives of other healthcare service providers, as well as hospital discharge planners and case managers.
Home care services are often covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and Commercial Insurance while the patient qualifies for the skilled service.
Hospice Services through SMH
When a person has a serious illness or disease and is nearing the end of life’s journey, hospice care can be the support needed. Hospice care focuses on assuring the quality of life that remains rather than providing treatment to prolong life.
When treatment goals change from cure to relief of symptoms, SMH Hospice is here to take care of you and your family. If the time comes for you or your loved one to need hospice services, you can expect a high level of compassion from our staff and volunteers. The services we offer include:
- Basic medical care with a focus on pain and symptom control
- Assistance with medication, medical supplies & equipment as needed and appropriate
- Support with the psychological, emotional, and spiritual end-of-life aspects
- A break (respite care) for caregivers, family, and others providing care
- Bereavement support & counseling
For more information about these services, go to our website or call our Home Care and Hospice team at