Defining The Difference Between Home Health Care And Home Care

March 22, 2024
At BrightStar Care of Des Moines, we often get asked the difference between home health care and home care as there are different regulations, services, and payers. Below is a list of general differentiators between the two services. The positive thing about them having different payor sources is that it is separate from each other and both services can be used to best serve clients in all the ways they may need. Please contact our office if you have any questions, we’re happy to help!

Home Health
  • Requires a physician’s order
  • Provides skilled nursing, PT/OT/ST, and a bath aid for rehabilitation
  • Must meet homebound eligibility requirements
  • Covered by Medicare/Insurance
  • Plan of care follows physician’s orders and insurance guideline
  • Frequency, duration and length of service determined by needs and eligibility
  • Can provide services in private residence, ALF, ILF
Home Care
  • No physician order with the exception of skilled nursing
  • Provides RNs, CNAs, CMAs, unlicensed caregivers
  • Does not have any requirements for being home bound
  • Private pay, VA, waivers, long term care insurance if covered on their policy
  • Plan of care developed by RN and per client’s needs and/or requests
  • Services provided per client request, may be 1 hour to 24 hours/day, sporadic to 7 days/week, length of care determined by client
  • Can provide services in private residence, ALF, ILF, nursing home
  • Services may include respite for family members, dressing, toileting, showers, meal prep, light housekeeping/laundry, transportation, errand running, transfer/mobility assistance, med reminders.