Programs that offer an interactive decision support process that helps individuals in need of long term care and their families understand their strengths, needs, preferences and unique circumstances and weigh the pros and cons of available alternatives. The consultation includes a discussion of the factors to consider when making long term care decisions, information about the range of long term care support options available in their community (such as personal care, transportation and medication management) and resources that can help them pay for services. The program also provides decision support to help identify next steps in the process and help in connecting with services, if needed. The service is generally available to older adults and adults of any age who have a disability; can be of benefit to people using their own resources to pay for services; and may be provided over the telephone or in person (at home, at an agency, in a hospital, at a rehabilitation or nursing facility or in another setting of the person's choosing). The objective of the program is to allow people to live as independently as possible in the setting of their choice.
Programs that offer the services of individuals who sit with people who are hospitalized or in another institutional setting in situations where the patients are determined to be at risk to themselves or their treatment because they are agitated, delirious or confused, unsteady on their feet or on suicide watch. Hospital sitters (also called "patient observers") work under the direct supervision of nursing staff and call for assistance if problems arise (e.g., the patient attempts to remove an IV line or get out of bed) or medical assistance is required. While in most cases sitters are supplied by the hospital or other institution in which an individual is a patient, some home health care agencies provide personnel that family members can hire to serve as an extra pair of eyes and ears to prevent errors and injuries or to function as a companion if they don't want a loved one to be alone.
Programs that provide a full range of supportive services in their own homes for terminally ill people who are in the final stages of their illnesses and for their families. Services may include medical care, pain and symptom management, home nurse visitation, case management, emotional and spiritual support, and bereavement services for the patient and members of the family.
Programs that provide assistance in performing routine household, yard and personal care activities for older adults, people with disabilities, eligible low income people, families whose normal routines have been disrupted by an emergency or others who need or want these services. The objective of in-home assistance is to help the recipient sustain independent living in a clean, safe and healthy home environment.
Organizations whose members are home health, hospice and personal care agencies that have affiliated for the purpose of promoting mutual interests, increasing the visibility of home care services, disseminating information to members and the general public and improving the quality, accessibility and affordability of in-home and end of life care. Home health and hospice associations may provide opportunities for personal and professional development through conferences, publications and other activities; advocate for the rights of patients, their families and caregivers and people who are bereaved; maintain referral services through which people who require home health, personal care, palliative care or hospice services are referred to member agencies; and/or provide information about employment opportunities for people working in the field.
The above terms and definitions are part of the Taxonomy of Human Services, used here by permission of INFO LINE of Los Angeles.