Understanding the Differences Between Skilled Care and Personal Care

July 14, 2023

Here at Brightstar Care, we provide a wide variety of care to clients of all ages and with all types of needs. However, all caregivers cannot necessarily provide all types of care, so it’s important to understand the distinction between those types as you consider engaging support for you or a loved one.

When it comes to home healthcare, there are various services available to cater to the unique needs of individuals. The two most common types of care we provide are skilled care and personal care. While both play vital roles in supporting individuals in their homes or facilities, it's important to understand their differences to make informed decisions about the care options available. In this blog post, we will explore the differences between skilled care and personal care in easy-to-understand terms.

Skilled Care:

Skilled care refers to medical care provided by trained healthcare professionals, in our case Registered Nurses and Licensed Practical Nurses. It involves delivering clinical services that require specialized knowledge, professional training, and certification. 

Key Points about Skilled Care:

Medical Expertise: Skilled care professionals possess a deep understanding of medical conditions, treatments, and therapies. They are trained to handle complex health issues and provide necessary medical interventions.

Medication Administration: Skilled care providers can administer medications, including injections, inhalation treatments, and intravenous therapy, while ensuring proper dosage and monitoring.

Wound Care: Skilled care includes specialized wound care management, such as cleaning, dressing changes, and monitoring for signs of infection.

Disease Management: Skilled care professionals assist in managing chronic conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease, by monitoring vital signs, providing education, and helping with medication adherence.

Rehabilitation Services: Skilled care may involve physical, occupational, or speech therapy sessions to aid in recovery after surgeries, injuries, or illnesses.

Personal Care:

Personal care, also known as non-medical care or custodial care, focuses on assisting individuals with their daily living activities. Personal care services are provided by Certified Home Health Aides (all licensed by the State of New Jersey) who are trained to offer support in activities that individuals may have difficulty performing on their own.

Key Points about Personal Care:

Activities of Daily Living (ADLs): Personal care providers help individuals with activities such as bathing, dressing, grooming, toileting, and mobility assistance.

Meal Preparation: Personal care includes assistance with meal planning and preparation, ensuring individuals receive proper nutrition and dietary support.

Light Housekeeping: Personal care providers can help with light housekeeping tasks like tidying up, laundry, and maintaining a clean-living environment.

Companionship: Personal care extends beyond physical tasks and includes social support, companionship, and emotional well-being.

Medication Reminders: While personal care providers cannot administer medications, they can offer reminders to individuals to take their prescribed medications at the right time.

Understanding the Synergy:

In many cases, individuals may require both skilled care and personal care services. These two types of care complement each other to ensure comprehensive support and well-rounded assistance. Home healthcare agencies often provide a combination of skilled care and personal care options to meet the diverse needs of their clients.

Skilled care and personal care are distinct yet interrelated components of home healthcare. Skilled care focuses on medical interventions, specialized knowledge, and clinical services, while personal care assists with daily living activities and provides companionship. Understanding the differences between skilled care and personal care empowers individuals and their families to make informed decisions regarding their home healthcare needs. At Brightstar Care, we are dedicated to providing a range of services to ensure individuals receive the appropriate care they require to thrive in the comfort of their own homes or facilities.

We will always be happy to talk about your specific needs and the types of services that will support those needs. Call us anytime at 732-343-6767.