Senior care has evolved considerably over the past few decades. Families used to have two options: provide care for Mom and Dad at home or put them in a nursing home. Today, an entire care ecosystem offers a range of options for each stage of senior care: paid in-home care services, community services, continuing care retirement communities, nursing facilities, hospice care services, and more.
We call it a care ecosystem because individuals don’t necessarily follow the progression of care services in a linear fashion from home care to hospice care. For example, a senior might suffer a fall, get hospitalized for initial treatment, spend a few weeks in a rehab facility, and then return to an independent lifestyle at home with the assistance of non-medical in-home care services.
Increasingly, private-pay home care services are helping to fill a gap for seniors between care provided by family members, hospital stays, and institutional care options. Or, they are used in combination with other care solutions to maximize the quality of care. Traditional government health care programs and institutional care options do not have the capacity to accommodate the wave of millions of Americans who will need some form of care in the coming decades. The home care model—providing one-on-one care wherever a senior calls home—offers an innovative alternative. Home Instead Senior Care first introduced this concept of private-pay non-medical home care in 1994, and today it is changing the way seniors are cared for around the world.
According to AARP, 90 percent of people aged 65 and older say they want to stay in their homes for as long as possible.
The Value of Home Care report developed by the Home Care Association of America and the Global Coalition on Aging summarizes the benefits of professional home care:
- Provides seniors with the choice to age at home, where most would prefer to be
- Promotes peace of mind and wellness for family caregivers
- Reduces our nation’s health system costs by improving health outcomes, strengthening preventive care, and lowering hospital admissions and readmissions
- Creates jobs in a fast-growing industry to help boost our nation’s economy
The advent of professional home care has changed the way seniors are cared for both in the U.S. and countries around the world. It is a proven business model that fills a market need in serving the world’s growing senior population. As the population ages, we will continue to see the value of home care as a growing part of the care ecosystem.