Hospice home care targets patients with six months or fewer of life expectancy, and home health care targets people progressing back toward independent living or at least maintaining quality of life while pursuing recovery. In both types of care, patients receive the full applicable spectrum of medical services, notes Amedisys.
Hospice care can take place within the home or in a nursing home or hospital -- wherever the patient resides during the last months of his life. Physicians, nurses, certified nursing assistants, chaplains, social workers and volunteers, all of whom have received specialized training to provide hospice care, collaborate to give the best care possible. Services include all medical equipment, medication and necessary supplies for navigating the terminal illness as well as management of symptoms and pain. Volunteers come by to provide companionship, and chaplains and social workers provide multiple levels of support for the patient and the family throughout bereavement, states Amedisys.
Home health care is designed to make hospital stays as brief and infrequent as possible by providing treatment at patients' homes. Skilled nurses; home health aides; physical, occupational and speech therapists; medical social workers and other professionals focus on getting the patient back on his feet and living independently, to the highest degree possible, according to Amedisys.