We know that selecting a home health aide is a very personal decision. We also think that your choice of the home health agency is important. Fedcap Home Care has been serving clients for over 40 years. Fedcap Home Health is certified by the Joint Commission, an organization dedicated to
ensuring that health care providers meet the highest standards. Fedcap Home Health is a mission driven not-for-profit organization dedicated to serving the needs of its clients.
A Certified Home Health Aide has completed all New York State requirements, including successfully completing a New York State approved training program and met the State’s continuing edification requirements. Certified Home Health Aides are listed on the State Registry. Home health aides can work with any client with qualifying needs, including children, elderly, individuals with mental or physical disabilities and / or chronic conditions.
Medical: Home health aides are trained to do basic health care services such as checking the client’s pulse, infection control and taking their temperature. They can assist the client to take medications, including reminding them that medications are due. They are trained to work with certain types of medical equipment and can assist the client to use them. They can track the client’s progress against a plan of care and report to the client’s physicians or nursing staff. They can also alert family and physicians of any deterioration in the client’s health.
There is also a designation called “Advanced Home Health Aide” that is permitted to perform a wider array of skilled nursing tasks under the supervision of a Registered Nurse.
Personal Care: Home health aides are trained to assist clients with personal care tasks such as grooming, dressing, eating, getting on and off the toilet, brushing their teeth, shaving and bathing. The aide will work with the client to determine the client’s level of need and comfort with this assistance.
Social: Home health aides also serve as companions to their clients, actively engaging with them on subjects of interest to them. They can play games with them, discuss the events of the day, help clients to plan menus and events and assist with errands and transportation to and from events.
Watchful: Home health aides are trained to look for unsafe conditions in the home such as uneven floors or carpet edges and to point these out to the client and other family members. Aides can also monitor whether the client is taking medications according to his or her plan of care and when medicine supplies are running low. Aides are trained in emergency procedures if the client has an urgent need.
Housekeeping: Home health aides can assist with some light housekeeping tasks, but are generally not intended to serve as housekeepers. Clients should consult with the home health agency on the scope of housekeeping duties the aide can appropriately be asked to handle without jeopardizing the client’s medical coverage.
The amount of time that a home health aide can spend with an individual client varies depending upon the client’s level of need, the amount of care that the client’s insurance or government benefits will cover and the client’s ability to pay for care directly. Some clients require round-the-clock nursing while others require only a few hours per day or week. Some clients want intermittent care, for example an aide to assist them with going shopping, to visit a friend or traveling to a medical appointment.
There are many ways for you to have the help of a home health aide. You can hire someone directly and in some cases your insurance, Medicare or Medicaid may cover it. So, why should you choose a home health agency instead of hiring someone directly? Because with a home health agency, you have the strength of the agency behind you.
The home health agency stands behind your aide and is responsible for:
• Making sure your aide is qualified, including verifying all training and performing criminal background checks;
• Making sure that your aide continues to meet your needs, including intervening if you feel uncomfortable asking your aide to do something differently or if you want a different person to come;
• Making sure you continue to have services even if your aide is unavailable;
• Ensuring that your aide maintains his or her skills over time, including receiving ongoing training in developments for health care services;
• Coordinating the arrangements for your services with your insurance company or government program as well as your doctor and any family you want to include;
• Providing insurance coverage to protect you from medical mistakes or losses caused by your aide;
• Providing on call coverage 24/7.
The State of New York requires any individual to have 75 hours of training in an approved training program and to have passed a competency test before becoming a Certified Home Health Aide.
Fedcap has provided training to its home health aides, significantly in excess of the levels of training required for New York State certification. Our aides have additional training in:
• Nutrition, including preparing healthy foods that will appeal to clients of different ethnic backgrounds;
• Ethics, confidentiality and prohibited conflicts of interest;
• Child Care;
• Dementia care, including techniques to work with clients with dementia;
• End of life issues and home health care;
• Turning and positioning the bed-ridden patient;
• Emergency Procedures;
• Documentation and record keeping.