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Health Care Shifts to Homes

Everyone gets older, and as people age they often depend on others to provide them with care. Aging individuals might need help getting around, doing certain tasks, performing proper hygiene or getting health care. Baby boomers are a notoriously independent bunch who are now 50 years old or older. This group of individuals is starting to see an increase in the number of boomers who need health care services, but as a whole, baby boomers are reluctant to move into nursing homes or elderly care centers, according to one recent article.

This streak of independence and determination is causing a shift in the traditional elder care paradigm to a more home-based system of care. The demand for home health aides is increasing, and will only continue to grow as more boomers reach the age where they need help. But as demand for people to fill these particular roles grows, there will also be a push to reduce the cost of home health care to make it affordable for the average baby boomer. Wages for home health care workers will be a cost that can be cut.

Low Wages For Home Health Workers Could Produce Lower Quality Care

When wages are low for any type of job, it is hard to keep workers employed and turnover rates can run high. Presently, home health workers make anywhere from 10 to 18 dollars an hour, in exchange for providing basic in-home health care and minor cleaning services to clients. For many home health care workers, these wages are too low to support a living, and many home health care workers leave their position within a year. Many home health workers enter this field because educational requirements for entry level positions are very low, but in order to be promoted in the home health care provider career path, workers need higher levels of education.

Home health care workers are paid in a complicated manner. Most of their wages come from Medicaid or other government programs. Hourly compensation for workers who are paid through the Medicaid program is determined by each state. So the hourly wage for a home health care worker in Pennsylvania is $19.19 per hour, New Jersey is $18 per hour, and Delaware is $26.52. However, the agency that the home health care worker is employed by gets a cut of this hourly wage, and there are also taxes to be paid from this amount, leaving the worker with whatever is left.

There is a concern that the quality of home health care could suffer if workers are not paid adequately for the services that they provide. Someone who isn’t paid well for their work has a tendency to care less than they should about their job. This could lead to inadequate care, negligence, elder abuse or neglect of in-home patients who require care.

Home health care is becoming more and more popular. But accidents and negligence can occur even in your own home. If you have been injured by an in home care provider, please contact one of the personal injury lawyers at Cohen, Placitella & Roth, P.C. today to discuss your case at no charge to you. Call us at (215) 567-3500 or send us an email through our online contact form available here.


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