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Health Library

Home Healthcare Overview

What is home healthcare?

When you or a family member needs medical care, in some cases, this can be done at home instead of the hospital. This is known as home healthcare. It helps reduce the amount of time a person needs to be in a hospital. Home healthcare is done by a healthcare team that works toward a common goal to help the person needing care.

Home healthcare may be a option for people who are:

  • Recovering from an illness

  • Having treatment

  • Disabled

  • Chronically ill

  • Terminally ill

Home healthcare is not the right choice for everyone. In most cases, the person having care or treatment at home must be well enough to not be in a hospital.

Healthcare provider taking man's blood pressure at home.

Types of home healthcare services

There are many types of medical and social home healthcare services. A person may have one or more of these services:

  • Healthcare provider care

  • Nursing care

  • Physical, occupational, or speech therapy

  • Medical social services

  • Care from home health aides

  • Homemaker or attendant care

  • Companionship

  • Volunteer care

  • Nutritional support

  • Medical equipment and supplies

  • Laboratory and X-ray imaging

  • Pharmaceutical services

  • Transportation

  • Home-delivered meals

Who provides home healthcare services?

Many types of agencies and companies provide home healthcare. They include:

  • Home health agencies

  • Homemaker and home care aide agencies

  • Pharmaceutical and infusion therapy companies

  • Durable medical equipment and supply dealers

  • Staffing registries and private duty agencies

  • Independent providers