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In the state of Illinois, senior home care is able to provide services to a range of people with different needs. Many of the services are offered through nurses, aides, therapists, and social workers who can come to the home a few hours a week or can even be available 24 hours a day – all depending on the needs of their patient. Home care is for those that need specialized medical care, but there is another option for seniors who just need some help around and it's called personal care. The point of both services is to allow seniors to have the option to remain in their own home and independent for as long as possible. There are about 1,637 agencies and the average monthly cost of Senior Home Care is about $4,099.
For seniors who may be recovering from an illness, surgery, or who just need assistance in their homes, this care type can be the solution. Hiring a home care aide is a way to provide professional help for you or your loved one, ranging from bathing, dressing, feeding, toileting, and general hygiene, to performing instrumental tasks like housekeeping, general shopping, transportation or meal preparation.
To get the professional help you or your loved one needs, you’ll have to decide whether a licensed medical professional or a non-medical paraprofessional would be a more appropriate fit. Although these two classifications can in many cases overlap, the main differences are in each caretaker’s ability to administer medical attention and their formal licensing.
There are a number of cities throughout IL that have senior home care agencies but the median monthly cost ranges from:
City Homemaker Services Monthly Costs Home Health Aide Monthly Costs Bloomington $4,671 $4,576 Carbondale $4,195 $4,195 Champaign $3,718 $3,909 Chicago $4,385 $4,385 Decatur $3,661 $3,876 Peoria $3,920 $3,981 Springfield $3,670 $3,813 Rest of State $3,718 $3,861
Illinois has many sights that to keep residents busy like a trip to Lake Michigan, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, Anderson Japanese Gardens, Chicago Riverwalk, the Starved Rock State Park, and much more.
The Starved Rock State Park has eighteen canyons, waterfalls, and walls of mossed covered stone that provide great views while taking a walk, hiking, or whatever activity a resident can dream of doing. The Anderson Japanese Gardens is a magical place with an assortment of plant life, small rivers, waterfalls, lakes, and gazebos to enjoy the incredible scenery. The Chicago Riverwalk is a path by the waterfront with restaurants, beaches, boat rentals, perfect for a night on the town.
Illinois is able to cater to seniors with a large number of activities and services available. There are numerous senior centers throughout Illinois that provide senior-oriented activities such as exercise, art, and technology help classes as well as games and entertainment. Specialized senior trips are also available to places like Cloud Gate, the Art Institute of Chicago, or Lake Michigan.
The climate in Illinois is considered continental with bitter winters and warm summers. There is also temperature, humidity, cloud, and wind direction fluctuations. For the winter, average lows are around 20 degrees and for the summer, highs average around 87 degrees. There are considerable differences between the weather in the northern and southern regions of IL because Lake Michigan influences the weather in the north. The south receives considerably more precipitation throughout the year, but the north gets significantly more snow. The precipitation comes often as storms, and they sometimes result in tornados. IL receives an average of 37 inches of rain and 22 inches of snow across the state annually. Heavy clothing during the winter and light to medium weight clothing during the summer should be expected.
This state is known for a relatively laid-back attitude and is the home to U.S. presidents like Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, and Barack Obama. Illinois is also home to Chicago, an internationally famous city for music, technology, finance, and much more. Chicago blues music is rooted here along with well-known theaters and shopping. The state also has a very deep association with history as Illinois was historically anti-slavery contributing greatly to the Underground Railroad before it had a presence in many other states.
Sperling’s Best Places ranked Illinois 46 on a scale of 100 (1 being the lowest crime) for violent crime and 42 for property crime; the United States overall ranked 41 for violent crime and 44 for property crime. Crime prevention committees such as the Illinois Crime Stoppers, Cure Violence-Chicago and the Illinois Crime Prevention Association all make an effort to strengthen community cooperation and partnerships with law enforcement.
It's important to recognize that there are safer parts of Illinois than others. Unfortunately, Chicago remains a city with much higher crime rates than other places in the U.S. Regardless of these concerns, your home care can be effective and safe in places like:
Location Violent Crimes Per 1,000 Residents Property Crimes Per 1,000 Residents Claredon 0.35 1.73 Hawthorne 0.00 2.80 Campton 0.18 3.00 Pinckneyville 0.54 2.70
Medicare-certified home health aides are required to have a federal minimum of 75 hours of training, including 16 hours of supervised practical or clinical training and 12 hours of additional education every 12 months following their licensing. Fortunately, Illinois actually requires 120 hours of training, making it one of the best states for home care in the United States!
However, each state’s approved programs for training and evaluation are overseen by federal legislation (42 CFR 484.36) to ensure national consistency and effectiveness.
Paying for home care in Illinois can be achieved in several ways, each based on what can work the best for your unique situation.
First off, seniors may look to Medicare to receive coverage for their copayment and deductibles for medical home care through the Medicare Supplemental Insurances program. However, keep in mind that Medicare does not cover non-medical home care whatsoever. If this is an issue, it may be necessary to look to the other remaining methods of payment.
Next, U.S. veterans can receive assistance for home care through benefits like the Improved Pension or Homebound and Aid & Attendance Pension. To apply you can contact your local Area Agency on Aging.
Most seniors will choose to pay privately to avoid the hassle of maintaining insurances and other qualifications. Besides using one’s own savings to pay for care, others may choose to pay through a reverse mortgage, by opening a home equity line of credit or by converting their life insurance policies. If you had purchased long-term care insurance earlier in life, this option is also very viable.
Medicaid is another joint federal and state insurance program available to seniors and their families with low income. The rules, eligibility requirements, and benefits of Medicaid are state-specific and will vary based on your location. This program refers to care received outside of a nursing home as Home and Community Based Services (HCBS). Here's a resource for more information on your state’s Medicaid requirements.
Seniors receiving home care from a Medicare-approved home health agency retain a series of guaranteed rights and protections with the intention of keeping your needs met. Before receiving home care in any form, it is required that the home health care agency provides you with information detailing your rights. You’ll be informed that you reserve the right to choose your own home care agency (pending a managed care plan if applicable), and to decide what services (medical or non-medical) you want to participate in. Your personal privacy and property are to be respected at all times in circumstances that it does not interfere with necessary medical attention.
If there comes a point when you are unable to make decisions regarding your own medical care, you have the right to entrust this responsibility to a family member or legal guardian. Remember, you also retain your Constitutional rights and those afforded to you by the Bill of Rights as a citizen of the United States. If you believe a violation of these rights has occurred, reach out to an elder law professional to understand what actions may be possible.
Seniors receiving home care in Illinois have the right to obtain copies of their medical records and other protected health information. Although it’s a common misconception that this information cannot be disclosed due to privacy laws, the fact is that you can submit a written request to your health care provider and actually receive copies or digital versions of this information. You are not required to provide a reason as to why you are making this request, although it is likely you’ll be charged a fee to receive your records.
This protected health information will detail information relating to your physical and mental health, including medical records, billing records, claims adjudication records, and other documents used in making decisions about your health care. While some cases warrant the denial releasing your information, your healthcare provider must respect your requests and respond within 30 days, or as many as 60 days later including a statement addressing the delay.