Doris Baeza of the Highland Manor Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, kicked off a new season of monthly luncheon meetings Sept. 20 designed to provide local seniors with useful and updated information concerning their health.
“We feel this type of forum gives seniors the information they need to make intelligent choices about health care in a relaxing and comfortable environment,” Baeza said as she welcomed guest speaker, Teresa Bowen, RN and administrator from Home and Hospice Care.
The free luncheon was attended by 16 guests who noshed while Bowen outlined options and Medicare benefits as they apply to home or hospice care.
“Both home care and hospice care are covered 100 percent by Medicare, however, a referral from a medical doctor is required,” said Bowen. Medicare coverage for home care requires the patient to be confined to their home, while hospice care allows some outside activity. There is no specific time limit for receiving the home care benefit. Hospice care coverage is intended for those patients diagnosed with less than six months to live.
The Mesquite Home and Hospice Care office provides skilled health professionals to patients allowing a patient to be at home while still receiving care. “People are more comfortable at home and loved ones nearby can support the healing process,” added Bowen, “they communicate with the physician, arrange for equipment and administer medications.”
Personal care from non-skilled workers is also available but not covered by Medicare. She also mentioned that supplemental insurance policies are available to cover expenses like drugs but a “secondary” insurance policy is needed to provide any home care services not covered by Medicare. She also said that grants are available under certain circumstances, such as IV therapy, to help defray costs. She did not elaborate on that topic but asked anyone with specific questions to contact her offices.
After a brief discussion Baeza announced that the next “Lunch and Learn” meeting will feature a medical doctor on Oct. 18, from noon to 1 p.m., speaking on eye health at the Highland Manor, 272 Pioneer Blvd. Anyone wishing to attend this free luncheon should call the Highland Manor at 702-346-7666 to reserve a seat.