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Inviting someone you don’t know into your home to help with your daily needs might feel uncomfortable at first, but the good news is it doesn’t have to be. With the right preparation, you can find the best in-home care for you or your loved one. Here are some key tips to consider as you get ready to start your in-home care search:

Think about the care you need.

Before you start searching for in-home care, think about what exactly it is you need help with. You should also consider if you’ll be needing long-term or short-term care. Knowing this information will help narrow down your search. Depending on your insurance plan, some providers will help cover the care costs, so identifying the services you need will also help you find out if you qualify for any coverage. Whether you’re looking for assistance with personal care (bathing, eating, dressing, etc.), medical care, housekeeping, or companionship, there are all kinds of options available to you. Visit MyPlaceCT’s Home Health Care page to learn more about the in-home care services and financial options you may be eligible for.

Decide where to look for help.

Once you’ve settled on the kind of care you need, you can now determine  the best way to get that care. The two most common ways of receiving in-home care are hiring someone yourself or getting help from an agency. If you’re hiring a caregiver, then you take on all responsibilities of an employer including interviewing, payment, scheduling, and more. Agencies, however, will do that work for you depending on what services they cover. Hiring through an agency may also be covered by your insurance, including Medicaid or Medicare, so be sure to look at the terms of your healthcare plan before starting your search.

Ask around!

Do you know any friends, family, or neighbors who have hired a caregiver? Talk to them about their in-home care experiences, including the services they used. Another great source of information is your doctor or healthcare provider. You can also do some online research to find agencies or organizations offering services that best align with your needs. There are even online registries listing home care workers near you that are available to help.

Know your budget.

Some in-home care services costs may vary, which is why it is helpful to know how much you plan to spend on in-home care. If you plan to use private pay, or pay out-of-pocket, don’t forget to think about possible costs that are often not considered. For example, how much does it cost to set up your caregiver’s payroll? What if your caregiver can’t come to work one day and you need someone else to take their place? These costs can add up. In some cases, insurance plans (including Medicaid and Medicare) will cover part of the expenses whether you go through an agency or private hire. However, long-term in-home services are generally not covered by Medicare. Get in touch with your healthcare provider if you’re interested in hiring a caregiver to see if you qualify for coverage.

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