ADLs – Abbreviation for Activities of Daily Living and includes bathing, dressing, eating, moving around, toileting and walking.
Bereavement Service – Care that is extended by hospice providers to family members following the death of a loved one; may include mailing, grief support groups, memorial services and more.
Caregiver – Someone who gives care to another person, in a professional, non-medical or informal capacity.
Companion – A non-medical caregiver that provides socialization for individuals wherever they call home; duties may also include housekeeping, preparing meals, escorting to appointments or activities, reminder services and more.
Custodial Care – Another name for non-medical care or private duty care that is not generally covered by Medicare, Medicaid or commercial insurance.
Dietary Service – A registered dietitian provides professional nutritional assessment and teaching to promote optimal healing through good nutrition.
Disease Management – Established methods of treatment and education used by nurses and other medical professionals to effectively manage the specific needs of various diseases such as diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), congestive heart failure (CHF), and other chronic diseases
Durable Medical Equipment – Prescribed medical equipment that can be used for an extended period of time.
Elder Care – Care for aged individuals; also referred to as geriatric care or senior care.
End-of-Life Care – Another name for hospice care
Government Funded Care – State and federally funded programs (not including Medicare and Medicaid) that provide in-home services to the elderly and disabled.
Homebound – as defined by Medicare guidelines, means leaving the home very infrequently and with great difficulty; leaving the home only for medical appointments, religious services, and occasional special activities with the assistance of others.
Home Care – Refers to non-medical or private duty services performed wherever the recipient resides.
Home Health Care – Refers to medical related, skilled services that must be performed by a professional such as a nurse or therapist as defined by Medicare and Medicaid guidelines.
Home Health Aide – A state licensed professional that provides personal care, assistance with activities of daily living and other duties as instructed and overseen by a skilled professional such as a registered nurse.
Hospice – A coordinated program of services provided in the home, long-term care facility or in an in-patient center for individuals with a physician’s diagnosis of a terminal illness. Care is performed by an inter-disciplinary team of professionals that manage pain and symptom control, maximize independence and socialization, and provide physical, psychological and spiritual support.
Hospice Benefit – Benefit under Medicare, most Medicaid and commercial insurance that pays 100% for a package of hospice services, including professional staff visits, 24-hour nurse availability, medications and treatments, home medical equipment and bereavement services.
Insurance Verification – Contacting a commercial insurance provider to determine network eligibility for services, coverage benefits, co-pays and out-of-pocket payment requirements.
Intermittent Care – Part-time medical assistance as defined by Medicare as care given on fewer than 7 days a week and less than 8 hours a day over a period of 21 days or less. Home health care is a form of intermittent care.
Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) – A professional that has completed one year of nursing education and has passed a licensing examination.
Medicaid – A jointly funded medical and financial Federal-State health insurance program that provides benefits to individuals with limited financial resources, the disabled and the elderly.
Medical Alert Service/Personal Response System – a type of equipment that provides a 24-hour telephone connection to professional responders in the event of a fall, medical emergency, or whenever assistance of any type is needed.
Medically Necessary – Supplies or services required for the diagnosis or treatment of a condition that meet accepted standards of medical practice.
Medication Dispenser – a type of equipment that dispenses prescribed medications at pre-programmed intervals and audibly reminds individuals to take the medication.
Medical Director – A physician that assumes overall responsibility for the development and implementation of all policies related to medical care. Also coordinates with an individual’s personal physician to ensure that the facility delivers the prescribed care.
Medical Social Work – Staff in this field provide psychosocial assistance such as case management, grief counseling, coordination of community resources, and assistance with the practical and psychological effects of coping with chronic and acute illness.
Medicare – A federal program that helps pay for medical expenses of those aged 65 and over. Medicare does not typically pay for long-term care expenses.
Mental Health Care – A team of mental health nurses, social workers and home care aides that work together to address acute and chronic psychiatric conditions and are trained to assist with implementing problem-solving and coping strategies.
Non-Medical Care – Care that does not require the skills of a nurse or therapist; services include companionship, homemaking assistance, personal care and respite care.
Not-for-Profit – Status of ownership characterized by a community-based volunteer Board of Directors that ensure that the agency’s approach to caring is community based and responsive to local needs. Surplus revenue is reinvested in the organization for improving or expanding services rather than paid to owners or shareholders.
Occupational Therapy – A type of rehabilitation service that assists individuals with mental, physical or developmental disabilities in performing everyday living tasks.
Palliative Care – A form of care geared toward those with a serious illness; typically includes visits from physicians, nurses and/or social workers. Palliative care is not covered as a package of services under the Medicare and Medicaid Hospice Benefit; medications, treatments and home medical equipment are provided and paid for separately, and Medicare co-pays apply.
Personal Care Assistant – a non-medical, non-licensed caregiver that has received additional training to provide hands-on assistance with activities of daily living such as feeding, bathing and continence care.
Physical Therapy – A type of rehabilitation service that uses specially designed exercises and equipment to help patients regain or improve their physical abilities.
Plan of Care – Written doctor’s orders for home health services and treatments based on the patient’s condition.
Private Duty – Caregivers, aides and attendants provide care on a private pay (fee for service) basis in the home, hospital or extended care facility.
Registered Nurse – A professional that has completed two years of nursing education and has passed a licensing examination.
Respite Care – Temporary relief from duties for caregivers.
Skilled Care – Care that must be performed, managed and evaluated by a professional such as a nurse or therapist.
Wound Care – Care performed by a team consisting of nurses, physical therapists, home care aides and a dietitian that are intensively trained in treating wounds of all types based on a personalized assessment of each patient’s needs.