Is In Home Nursing More Affordable Than Traditional Nursing Homes?
Would it surprise you to learn that 71% of older adults aren’t willing to live in a nursing home?
Many aging adults don’t want to live in a nursing home. They are more comfortable and happy in their place. However, there may come a time when your loved one needs extra help and care.
The good news is there’s another option. In-home nursing is becoming popular for many reasons.
One factor that is appealing to families is the financial cost. Now you may be thinking that in-home nursing costs will be sky-high, and while it is expensive, it may be less of a financial burden for you and your loved ones.
In this guide, we are going to break down the cost of in-home nursing and compare it to nursing home costs. You’ll then be able to make an informed decision about the health and well-being of your aging loved one.
Understanding In-Home Nursing
In-home nursing care provides a wide range of services. The goal is to meet the patient’s specific needs.
Healthcare providers can assist with activities of daily living, such as meal preparation, medication management, bathing, dressing, and companionship. Skilled nursing care is also available for those with complex medical needs.
A trained professional will tailor their care to the patient’s requirements, making it highly personalized. This type of care allows the patient to stay as independent as possible.
You can ensure proper care. This isn’t always an option when they are living in a traditional nursing home.
Breaking Down the Cost
Unfortunately, the cost of in-home nursing isn’t as straightforward as it may seem. Numerous factors affect the amount you pay and we break them down below.
When you’re considering the cost of in-home nursing, you can expect to be charged on an hourly basis.
Ratings are dependent on several factors as well. Your location, the type of care required, and the credentials of the caregiver all affect the hourly rate.
Typically, hourly rates range from $20 to $40, but it may be higher if skilled nursing care is needed.
Daily or Weekly
You’ll likely need care for more than just a few hours. For extended periods, you’ll be looking at daily or weekly rates.
The cost will, ultimately, be based on how many hours of care are needed. You’ll need to decide if part-time care is enough or if you need 24/7, round-the-clock care.
You can always adjust your level of care whenever needed. If you start with part-time care and decide your loved one needs more, you can make adjustments.
Weekends, Nights, and Holidays
When you’re working on your budget for in-home nursing, you’ll need to factor in the cost of care on weekends and holidays. This will be more expensive as the demand is higher and limited availability.
There may be overtime charges for overnight hours or extended shifts. If you need a caregiver to be present for 12 hours at a time, you can expect to pay extra.
Where your loved one lives will also affect the cost. If the medical professional has to drive or travel a significant distance, the cost may increase slightly.
Finding a nurse or caregiver who lives close by is beneficial for numerous reasons, but especially for the cost. Small fees can add up quickly and make the service less affordable.
Caregiver Credentials and Specialized Equipment
You’ll also need to consider the level of caregiver expertise that you and your loved one need. A certified nursing assistant (CNA) and a home health aide (HHA) will be more affordable than a registered nurse or a licensed practical nurse.
If your loved one needs specialized equipment or supplies, the price will increase as well. This may include mobility aids or wound care supplies.
There will also be additional fees if you hire a caregiver through a home care agency. This extra cost goes towards administrative costs and insurance. While these are typically high fees, you need to be aware of them.
Planning for In-Home Nursing
In order to plan for in-home nursing care, you must follow a few steps. Planning for extended home care requires some time and research.
Many family members are sure where to start in the process and it can be overwhelming. The following steps will make getting started more manageable.
Assess Your Needs
The first thing you’ll need to do is determine your needs and the needs of your loved one. Do they need personal care, medical care, or a combination of both?
This information will help you estimate the number of hours of care required.
Take the time to sit down and create a budget. You’ll need to think about all the factors above. Be sure to account for the duration of care needed.
Will you need medical care for several weeks, months, or years?
This will help you create a comprehensive budget. The last thing you want is to be hit with an unexpected bill or charge.
During this process, you’ll also want to explore financial assistance too.
This will be the most time-consuming portion. You’ll want to gather quotes from several agencies in your area. This will not only give you a deeper understanding of the cost but also ensure you find the best fit for your needs and budget.
Some agencies will be better than others, so don’t rush this step.
Read through reviews and ask questions. You don’t want to hire an agency that has lots of hidden fees.
Plan for Changes
Changes can be difficult, especially when you have an aging parent or loved one. However, they do happen and you need to be ready for them.
Your loved one’s needs may change over time and you’ll need to adjust your plan and budget. Regular reassessment and open communication are essential and will make this step easier.
Ways to Pay
There are numerous ways to pay for in-home nursing. The most straightforward way to pay is by using personal savings, investments, or retirement funds.
This option gives you more flexibility to choose the level of care you want.
However, if you choose this option, you’ll need to ensure there are funds to cover the costs for the entire time.
Some long-term care insurance provides coverage for in-home nursing care. You’ll need to check your specific insurance policy. Premiums for long-term care insurance can vary greatly depending on the patient’s age and health status.
Medicare rarely covers non-medical or custodial care. To access these benefits, your loved one’s physician must certify that they require skilled nursing care for therapy.
Another option that can be very beneficial for those who need financial assistance is nonprofit organizations. Check with your community about assistance programs.
Many agencies offer in-home nursing financing, which can be very helpful if you or your loved one, don’t have extra cash.
Unseen Cost Benefits for Seniors
Many people only focus on the obvious cost factors. However, many benefits of in-home nursing go unseen and can decrease how much money is spent on help care.
For example, in-home nursing often leads to better and improved mental health. This reduces the need for anti-anxiety medication and anti-depressants.
In-home nursing also allows both professionals and families to assist in the loved ones’ care. This can reduce long-term costs as well.
With in-home nursing care, aging adults have access to health care quickly. They have someone looking out for them, which can result in faster healing after surgery or illness.
This alone can help reduce the length of time they have to stay at the hospital. It can help prevent frequent doctor visits, which are expensive.
In-Home Nursing Care Checklist
The decision between a nursing home and in-home nursing can be challenging, even if money isn’t a concern.
It’s time to start considering in-home nursing when your loved one starts to complain about being lonely. If their home is unkempt, unsafe, or untidy, it may be time to hire a professional as well.
If they are unable to drive to social outings or appointments, having a nurse to help could be beneficial.
This can be a sensitive topic for everyone, so be sure to approach the subject gently with your loved one. If possible, make it an open dialogue and listen to their thoughts and needs.
Traditional Nursing Home Cost
Understanding the cost of traditional nursing homes and nursing home financing will help you make your decision. On average, the cost for a private room ranges between $80,000 and $100,000. If you choose a semi-private room, the price falls considerably.
Similarly, for in-home nursing costs, nursing home costs are going to be based on the level of care that is needed. Levels of care range from basic assistance to specialized medical care.
In-Home Nursing vs. Nursing Home Costs Explained
The cost of in-home nursing care versus traditional nursing homes can be quite comparable. Once you’ve adjusted the costs for your specific needs and location, you may find in-home nursing to be more affordable.
While cost is an important aspect, it shouldn’t be the sole decision maker. Your loved one’s health needs and unique circumstances should be considered.
Ultimately, the goal should be to provide the best possible care and quality of life for your aging loved one.
Here at Med1Care, we’ve been providing high-quality in-home care for two decades. To receive the best care, fill out our new patient assessment form.