Thursday, October 18, 2018
Home Care

Why Home Care? 

Home care is an excellent cost-effective alternative to institutional care.  Consumers overwhelmingly prefer home care delivered services because it:
  • Keeps families together
  • Supports independence
  • Is significantly less expensive and more efficient than other forms of health care
  • Prevents or postpones institutionalization
  • Involves the individual and family in services that are delivered
  • Represents the best American tradition
Home Care is both the oldest and newest form of health care.  Traditionally given at home throughout the centuries, home care now is taking advantage of modern technologies, making virtually anything that can be done in a hospital available at home.  Home care is the most cost effective and satisfying type of health service available.  To learn more, call Washington County Public Health & Home Care at 319-653-7758 or 800-655-7758. You can also click on the link below to fill out a Home Health Inquiry Form to submit to Public Health.  We will we happy to contact you per your instructions.

Home Health Inquiry Form

Home Health Payment Guidelines

Who Provides Home Care?

The range of home care services available to individuals in their own home includes:

  • May initiate service
  • Determine plan of care for skilled services
  • Review services periodically
Registered Nurses
  • Provide direct skilled care
  • Coordinate patient care with physicians
  • Educate family members, friends, or other caregiver(s) in the care/support needs of the patient

Home Care Aides/Homemakers
(Trained or Supervised Para-Professionals)
  • Perform skilled personal care procedures
  • Assist in bathing, grooming, dressing, cooking, and exercise
  • Vacuum, dust, clean, light housekeeping, shop
  • Prepare nutritious meals and do laundry
  • Teach budgeting, parenting skills, and provide emotional support
Social Workers
  • Assist families in evaluating financial needs
  • Direct people to needed local support systems
  • Counsel and assure that the patient's and family's emotional needs are met
  • Provide physical, occupational, and speech therapies according to patient's needs

Who Pays for Home Care?

Home care is paid for by a variety of sources.  Benefits and requirements vary greatly, however.  Major home care payment sources include:

Patient/Private Pay
Home care services can be personally paid.  The scope of services and the charges are negotiated between the patient/family and the agency.  For those whose resources do not cover home care, Washington County Public Health & Home Care offers a sliding-scale fee schedule so that a family need only pay what it can afford.

Financial Data Form (to print blank form and mail)

Private Health Insurance

Policy coverage varies.  Generally private insurance coverage is limited to physician-directed medical services and equipment.  The patient and family should check with their insurance agent to determine coverage specifics.


The patient must be under a physician's plan of care, homebound, and in need of intermittent skilled nursing care or occupational/physical/speech therapy.  Eligible clients may receive a range of services which include skilled nursing, home care aide, physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy, and medical social work.

Medicaid/Title 19

This federal/state administered medical assistance program provides services similar to Medicare for low-income people.  No prior hospitalization or "skilled" level of service is required to qualify.  Individuals do not need to be homebound.

Worker's Compensation

Any person needing home care services as a result of injury on the job is eligible.  Workers' compensation representatives have information on eligibility.

Health Maintenance Organizations

HMOs and Comprehensive Medical Plans (CMP) with Medicare contracts must provide the full range of Medicare-covered services that are available in a geographic area, including home care services.

Champus (Tri-Care Insurance) 

On a cost-shared basis this program covers skilled nursing care and other professional medical home care for dependents of active military personnel, retiree's and their dependents and survivors.