Meeting Home Health Care Workers
If ever there was a time to meet some of the people who work in the world of home care, it’s now. There are people living at home today instead of nursing homes or street, because of home health care workers. They are a healing presence in today’s society.
To be clear, when this writer says home care workers, he’s including everyone in the company. Top to bottom, from ownership and management, to the home-care staff that daily takes the field, and lifts the lives of their neighbors.
According to the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing website, ”By the end of the nineteenth century, benevolent ladies across the United States were creating organizations to send trained nurses into the homes of the sick poor to provide care and prevent the spread of their dangerous contagious diseases.”
However, it was not until 1909 when Metropolitan Life designed an insurance program so the home care groups and caregivers – the Visiting Nursing Society of Philadelphia is one example – could be paid for their work.
In 1935, the passage of the first Social Security Act.
According to PA’s School of Nursing website, “In the end home care was included in the Medicare, Medicaid, and the Older Americans Act initiated in the 1960s. It was home care’s presumed ability to empty hospital beds that resulted in its inclusion in the Medicare program.”
The Balanced Budget Act of 1997 wounded the Medicare home care benefit born in 1965. According to the PA School of Nursing website, “The outcome was swift: over 3,000 agencies closed, the number of visits per patient decreased, and public funding for home care was dramatically reduced,” and a “2004 study found that one in five (22.9 million) U.S. households were involved in caring for a person older than eighteen.
The Covid-19 pandemic sent many into an experience of knowing their lives were at risk, particularly before the vaccine. During that time, every home health care company with purity-of-mission saw its staff daily take the field, and lifts the spirits and hopes of their neighbors.
The first profile will be out in a week or so. Stay tuned.