Effective on September 1st, 2008 all homecare agencies will need to be licensed. There are 5 different types of licenses. Peak will have all 5 types of licenses
Home Health Agency License-This license covers intermittent care such as a Nurse coming over to assess a patient, a Home Health Aide giving a bath, a Physical Therapist providing therapy etc. The visits are less than two hours. Insurance companies and Medicare will sometimes cover services provided by a Home Health Agency. To accept reimbursement from Medicare, the agency must also be Medicare certified. Peak is not a Medicare certified agency.
Home Nursing Service Agency-This license covers care delivered by Licensed Nurses. The services are billed on an hourly basis. The care is coordinated with the patient's physician. Insurance companies may cover this type of service. The nurses are employed by the Nursing Service Agency. An RN supervises the care. The length of service for this type of agency is up to 24 hours/day. Medicare does not cover this type of service.
Home Services Agency-This license is for non-medical home care. The agency employs the caregivers and is responsible for supervision of the services. Long Term Care Insurance companies may pay for this type of service. Medicare does not cover this type of service. This care may be up to 24 hours/day and is billed on an hourly basis. There are strict guidelines about what the caregivers can and cannot do.
Home Nursing Placement Agency-This agency places Licensed Nursing personnel in home care situations for a one-time fee. The family then pays these nurses. There is no supervision or agency responsibility after the placement. The family and nurse are responsible for paying the taxes, workman's comp, and any other expenses.
Home Service Placement Agency-This agency places custodial non-medical workers. The family will pay a one-time fee to the agency and then will be responsible for managing the caregiver, paying the taxes, workman's comp, etc.
These changes in the Illinois law were enacted to protect the consumer from inappropriate placements such as, illegal aliens, convicted felons, and unqualified workers being placed. All of the above agencies are responsible for getting a criminal background check on anyone they hire or place, as well as a social security number. Anyone placing or providing homecare services should have one of the above licenses. It is illegal to place homecare workers otherwise.
Homecare provided by a licensed agency, if ordered by a physician may be tax deductible.