Understanding the Types of Senior Care

Deciding on care for seniors is a decision most Pennsylvanians will make at some point in their lives either for a loved one or for themselves. Independent living assisted care, or full care are decisions most don’t plan for as they might for retirement planning. Many unknown factors come to play for younger people when making these decisions, such as health and finances, but a person can still draft a rough plan for later. For those who are already at the age, creating a list of pros and cons is beneficial to understanding the care they need and the living situation they want. 

Common Terms and Explanations 

Terms commonly found in home healthcare can be confusing. The type of care usually depends on who performs the care—whether services occur in-home or at another location. A nurse or licensed medical profession provides skilled care. This can include administrating medications and health checks such as blood pressure. Anyone can provide custodial care, or non-skilled care, and this is typically assisting with everyday functions such as meal preparation, bathing, eating, and dressing. It can also include driving a senior to and from places, or some custodial caregivers will provide light housecleaning duties too. 

Home care and home health care are easily confused. Both services occur in the home, and sometimes the services do overlap. However, they are not the same. Home health care involves a skilled caregiver. Home care uses a non-skilled caregiver. 

The type of care a person requires varies. If a senior requires regular vital checks, assistance with medical equipment, or requires help with medical braces and prosthetics, home health care might be the better option. If a senior requires help with their daily basic needs, help with simple household chores, and transportation, home care might be better suited for them. 


Make sure to research local options first. For example, in home senior care newville pa web search will return at least 20 results alone, so it is important for seniors to have a good idea of the type of care they will need daily before looking at companies or assisted living homes. Seniors should cross off in-home service providers that do not meet their needs, but they might wish to keep ones that might be a good fit along with any that fully match what they seek. 


Home care and home health care costs add up. Rates can vary widely and start around $9.00 and upward to $30 per hour. Seniors and their families need to know what they can afford. In addition, they should be aware of possible insurance coverage, tax credits and deductions, and medical deductions to assist with covering in home care costs. Respite care might be another option to lower costs by offsetting hours. Other ways to afford care are to lower the overall living costs and using services like Meals on Wheels (MOW) to cover meals. Local organizations and churches that seniors belong to might also have programs in place to assist its members. Sometimes, all it takes is asking.


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