Medicare typically does not include long-term care that you receive in your home. However, if you need assistance after an injury or surgery, there are options available. Whether Medicare pays for in-home caregivers will depend on the type of care, the reason, and the length of time you need it.
You can typically use Medicare’s home health benefits if you’re homebound as a result of an illness or injury, a few qualifying examples are listed here:
- Your doctor verifies that you need at-home care and writes a plan outlining the care you need.
- You need skilled nursing care (limits are set).
- Your doctor thinks your condition is going to improve.
- You need a home health aide to help care for you while you recover. The home health agency providing your care is Medicare-approved or certified.
Now that we’ve clarified what circumstances can qualify you, let’s look at some of the therapy options that can be covered. You can also ask to be considered for social services. If you qualify, you may get help finding additional resources and support for your condition. You may also get social, emotional, or psychological counseling in addition to the therapy below.
Physical therapy: If a therapist is treating you at home, Medicare Part B is likely to cover 80% of those services. Includes an assessment, training & exercises, as well as wound care. You still pay 20% of the Medicare-approved amount, and the Part B deductible will apply.
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Occupational therapy: When being treated by this type of therapist you will more than likely receive help with establishing daily routines or taking medications, planning meals, and taking care of personal needs.
Speech therapy: This type of therapy traditionally includes help recalling or identifying words, regaining the ability to swallow, learning to eat and drink as you once did before, and learning new ways to communicate.
Nursing care: This would include a registered or licensed nurse assisting with wound dressings, catheter changes, injecting medications, administering IV drugs, etc.
Home Health Aides: Home health aids are likely to be helping with daily tasks like watching your vital signs. They’ll make sure your medications are being taken at the right dose and will monitor your eating and drinking habits.
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Which parts of Medicare cover caregivers? Which type may be the most useful to you will depend on your plan and circumstances, of course. But all of these provide coverage in some way:
- Medicare Part A
- Medicare Part B
- Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage).
- Medicare Part D
- Medicare Supplement (Medigap)
Have questions about whether Medicare covers a particular item or service? Call (704) 765-4689.