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Home Health-care How Well Are Your Employees Covered

March 1, 1998
Related Topics: Health and Wellness, Featured Article
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Home health-care services generally are rolled into a company’s overall health-insurance benefits package, but specific coverage can be negotiated. When you’re ready to renew your policy you might be smart to ask these questions:

1. How does the managed-care organization check accreditation of home health-care providers? Federal and state rules that govern care in nursing homes don’t apply in private homes. The Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations based in Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois (www. jcaho.org) accredits home health-care providers, but accreditation is voluntary. Many managed-care organizations are now pressuring home health-care providers to provide accreditation and other credentials.

2. What home health-care services are provided?
Many policies cover skilled nursing care. Find out if your policy also covers such services as physical, occupational, speech and respiratory therapies, home-health aides, and such medical equipment as wheelchairs, adjustable beds and traction devices.

3. Are there limits to the amount of services a patient can receive?
Some policies have dollar limits per episode or per year.

4. What are the grievance procedures?
Representatives of the organization should provide satisfactory responses to patients and patient advocates concerning coverage of home health-care services.

Workforce, March 1998, Vol. 77, No. 3, p. 32.

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