Smiling friendly in-home male nurse in uniform supporting an old man with a walking stick

Home Health Care, Palliative Care, and Hospice Care sound similar, but these three levels of care are unique in their approach to recovery and comfort. 

A broken hip, kidney failure, cancer, or dementia, even the toughest among us need help. Life happens to us all, regardless of who we are, how much we make, or how many vegetables we eat. Who do we call when we need help? 

We are going to discuss these three service options and decipher which is right during our time of need.  

What Is Home Health Care?

The objective of home health services is to treat illness or injuries while regaining independence and promoting proper healing. Home healthcare agencies support people of any age with a variety of ailments. 

They employ a wide range of professionals including nurses, wound care professionals, personal attendants, occupational therapists, physical therapists, and speech therapists, to name a few. These experts are used to support the goals and objectives of the individual. They can help with obtaining durable medical equipment including walkers and canes, as well as medical equipment such as bandages and ointments. 

Home health services are provided in the individual’s home, wherever that may be, including nursing homes.  

What Is Palliative Care?

The primary goal of palliative care is easing pain and discomfort, reducing stress, and promoting the highest quality of life. 

To access these services, a person must have a serious illness, examples include cancer, kidney failure, or Parkinson’s. Curative and therapeutic care are allowed while receiving palliative care. This means a person can receive dialysis or chemotherapy while also receiving palliative care. 

These services are accessible in our home, a hospital, a nursing home, or an outpatient clinic. Palliative care is not necessarily end-of-life care.  

What Is Hospice Care?

Quality of life and comfort at the end stages of life are goals for hospice providers. One of the qualifiers for hospice care is having a life expectancy of six months or less. 

Formal or curative treatment is not permissible in hospice care. Individuals who are actively undergoing dialysis or chemotherapy may not be suitable for this level of care. Individuals can come on and off hospice care as considered appropriate by the individual, their physician, and the care team.

Hospice services can be provided to an individual in a home, a hospital, or a care facility.  

Finding the Right Level of Care

If it is a broken leg, dialysis, or even terminal cancer, there is a level of care that can help during times of need. While these three options sound similar they are all unique in their approach and outcomes. Obtaining a physician’s order is needed for all levels of care. Medicaid, Medicare, and other insurance usually cover part or all the costs of these services. 

Now that you have a broader understanding of the various levels of care, you can actively seek the provider that is right for your circumstances.  

Hammerle is Here to Help with Care Management

If you need help with navigating care management and guardianship, schedule a consultation with the experienced attorneys and staff at Hammerle Finley Law Firm.

Courtney Carey is a Texas Certified Guardian and a Care Manager, with experience in Texas Medicaid waiver programs for intellectual and developmental disabilities, mental health, and geriatrics. Contact Hammerle Finley Law Firm to schedule a consultation: 

The foregoing does not constitute legal advice.