Illinois Home Care in 2018
Ensuring Respect, Dignity,
and Quality Care
2018 is sure looking to be bright and eventful—especially for those involved in home care in Illinois.
On August 11, 2017, Illinois passed the Home Health, Home Services, and Home Nursing Agency Licensing Act. This is going to be a game changer for both home care providers, health professionals, and most importantly, the patients who benefit from these services. This Act went into effect in 2018 on January 1st.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?
This new legislation requires that Illinois health care facilities and providers who receive funding from the state only refer discharged patients, as well as their families, to accredited and licensed Home Health, Home Service, and Nursing Home agencies.
This ensures that the caregivers of these agencies have the proper training needed to take care of an elderly patient and have safeguards in place to ensure ongoing supervision of proper care and safety.
Licensing and accreditation also ensures that caregivers will undergo background checks, have workers compensation and liability insurance coverage, and ensure consistent supervision and accountability by the agency.
WHY DID THIS COME ABOUT?
According to the National Institute on Aging, the US population of persons over the age 65 is expected to double by the year 2030.
As this population rises, it is increasingly important that there be safeguards in place to ensure that senior citizens, along with people of all ages who require assistance with daily care, receive quality care and are treated with respect. The Illinois Homecare Council, Life Services Network, AARP, and National Private Duty Association (NPDA) all found that historically, this has not always been the case.
It’s been commonplace to refer and include non-licensed agencies on provider lists for patients and families. This legislation arose from many unfortunate reports of neglect and abuse in senior care, particularly in instances where agencies were not licensed and caregivers were not properly trained.
Abuse came in a variety of forms – financial, mental, and physical. Utilizing licensed and accredited agencies requires staff to undergo extensive background checks. This ensures that this type of abuse does not happen. Licensing also requires training and routine reviews of caregiver competency.
This is a huge win for the families of Illinois! This important legislation will help point patients and families to qualified agencies. When it’s time to start having conversations about care for your elderly loved one, you’ll have greater certainty that you’ll be referred to a licensed and properly trained support professional.
This year on January 16th, the Home Care Association of America is holding a special membership meeting to help spread the word and teach people about the fantastic work that they are doing to provide our seniors with the best care possible. Participating home care providers will have the opportunity to join the conversation and learn more about what is happening right here in Illinois regarding this issue.
As an accredited and licensed home care provider, Traycee Home Care s proud of its 40+ year legacy of licensing and accreditation. Traycee takes great pride in extensively screening and training high-quality caregivers.
Traycee’s esteem team of registered nurses have decades of experience. Our nursing team directly trains and equips Traycee caregivers with strong competencies in care. In addition, our caregivers receive specialized training in supporting activities of daily living, mobility, and social communication. Traycee caregiver training also includes added attention to meal planning, nutrition, safety, and life enrichment activities. This helps to ensure focused attention on the whole person with the ability to promote physical, mental, cognitive, and social wellness of our clients.
Traycee Home Care is on board with the changes that are happening in Illinois. We are proud to be part of a state that values senior care.
Thank you, Home Care Association of America, for bringing about this significant legislation.