Home health isn’t just about providing the services of registered nurses, occupational therapists, and physical therapists. One of our most impactful offerings is the broad array of home medical equipment we provide to assist our patients in recovery and achieving better quality of life.
Our existing patients can attest to the fact that having the right medical equipment is life-changing. Not only can it help you maintain independence and dignity, but the right medical equipment can also make it possible to live an active lifestyle once again. In fact, with the right home medical equipment, chronic health concerns that kept you from living your best life before can be managed, improved, and sometimes, nearly forgotten.
The home medical equipment and supplies offered by HealthKeeperz includes:
The impact that this equipment has on our patients’ lives is hard to overstate – not to mention the impact on our patients’ families, who are positively affected in multiple ways. For one thing, it can mean family members have more freedom and less anxiety about the patient’s day-to-day life. In addition, family members are overjoyed when a loved one is able to gain back a measure of autonomy and an active lifestyle. That means he or she can participate in more family fun!
What really sets our home medical equipment services a cut above the rest is that we deliver them straight to your door. That means no hospital visits, no waiting around, and no hassle. Making things easy and stress-free for you is our priority.
If you’d like to order home medical equipment or supplies and see for yourself what a difference they can make in your quality of life, please contact us at 800-309-3784 to start the conversation.
One of our major service areas at HealthKeeperz is the delivery of home-based hospice care. Many folks don’t know what hospice care is, unless they’ve been part of a family that received these services.
A Different Framework of Care
Hospice care marks a transition from traditional medical care. With medical care, the goal is to make the patient “better,” whether it’s curing an illness, bringing a disease into remission, or giving anti-biotics to fight a bacterial infection. Hospice comes into the situation when a patient has a terminal illness and decides, usually with family and their doctor, that treatments for slowing or curing the disease aren’t working.
In other words, hospice focuses on quality of life rather than quantity.
A Team Approach
Hospice situations call for a professional team of skilled nurses and other professionals who provide a high level of care. At HealthKeeperz, we think we deliver an extra level of care by allowing patients to make end-of-life decisions and receive care from the comfort and dignity of their homes. With hospice care, we can give our patients relief from pain, breathing difficulties, and other quality of life challenges as they spend precious time with family and friends. And that’s just it—instead of finding a cure or disease management, we’re focusing on quality of life for however long the Lord grants it.
While the team may be led by a home health nurse and nursing aide, don’t think we’re limited to just meeting your health needs during this critical time. In fact, we bring in, as the family desires, trained hospice volunteers who are there for making you comfortable, offering respite to family, and just taking care of all the things not directly related to your health. Like our skilled employees, our hospice volunteers are your friends and neighbors, stepping up to ensure that you and your family have a gentle, comfortable hand during what can be a stressful time.
Caring for Spiritual and Emotional Needs, Too
Just as important as the home health hospice nurses and hospice volunteers, our chaplains play a special role in the lives of our hospice patients and their families. Central to our mission of giving care to all for the glory of God, our chaplains are trained to be sensitive to the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of our patients, their families, and their friends. Hospice chaplains are a special breed at HealthKeeperz, and they have the ability to enter virtually any situation and provide the care for which they are trained, based on the unique needs of each patient and family.
Transitioning to end-of-life care can bring about deep spiritual questions, along with the other hard questions about care and personal affairs.
While there are many great hospice care facilities across North Carolina, we are here for those who wish to receive hospice care services in their homes. We believe that these services should be available and delivered with the same level of quality as the best facilities in the state. If your family is in need of these services, we would be honored to care for you. Please contact us at 800-309-3784 to start a conversation.
North Carolinians who need home health care use a variety of means to pay for it, whether it’s out of pocket through savings, or through various forms of insurance like private health plans, Medicaid, or Medicare. Today, let’s talk about how people qualify for home health coverage under Medicare.
What Is Medicare?
Established in 1965 as part of amendments to the Social Security Act, Medicare is the federal government program that provides health care coverage (health insurance) if you are 65 or older, under 65 and receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) for a certain amount of time, or under 65 and with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). Known by its “parts,” Medicare provides for inpatient and hospital coverage through Part A, while Part B pays for outpatient and medical coverage. Part D is the more recently enacted prescription drug benefit program.
Many people confuse Medicare and Medicaid. The easiest way to remember the difference is by knowing who benefits from each program. Medicare is basically engineered to provide health care coverage for older Americans, while Medicaid targets its help to lower-income and poor Americans.
Medicare Coverage of Home Health Services
At HealthKeeperz, we offer a wide range of health services delivered in your home. Services covered by Medicare include intermittent skilled nursing care, therapy, and care provided by a home health aide. Depending on the circumstances, home health care may be covered by Part A or Part B.
Here’s a quick guide for qualifying for home health care under Medicare. Patients must meet the following requirements:
At HealthKeeperz, our mission is to care for all for the glory of God. Each and every day, teammates across North Carolina fan out from county offices to call on patients they hold dearly in their hearts. In our culture, each position on the home health team is empowered to lead through humility, encouragement, selflessness, and caring for patients and each other. Two key roles on our many teams are those of the occupational therapist and physical therapist.
Many folks, when they first engage with us, may be a bit confused by the difference between these two roles. In fact, they are quite different, starting with the focus of each kind of therapist. Let’s start with a big similarity though—both types of therapists care for patients with hands-on, rehabilitative therapy to help those who are recovering from injuries or living with disabilities.
Physical therapists primarily care for those recovering with from injuries and surgeries. The main benefit of home-based PT is that patients, especially seniors, are able to continue their recovery in the comfort and dignity of their own homes, getting the same level of care that they would from hospital based PTs without the hassle of multiple hospital visits. Physical therapists work with patients to help them regain their pre-injury or pre-operative strength, through motion exercises, massage, and other techniques of the profession.
PTs also focus on injury prevention, in order to minimize future surgical interventions or long-term medications, whenever possible.
Occupational therapy, on the other hand, is applicable not only to post-operative situations and injury recovery, but also for those with developmental and cognitive disabilities. Occupational therapists, rather than starting with the body itself, focus on what patients need to do—occupations—at home and at work, as applicable. Versus a straightforward focus on health, as with physical therapy, occupational therapy focuses on quality of life through helping patients do what they want to do on a daily basis, as they struggle with conditions that can affect motor skills, emotions, or behavior.
While PTs focus on exercise, OTs focus on daily tasks.
We have found that both physical therapists and occupational therapists play gamechanging roles for our patients at HealthKeeperz, and our patients don’t miss a beat when compared to those who receive therapy at hospitals. Our PTs help patients build strength, reduce pain, and increase mobility, and many patients achieve physical fitness for their age and circumstance. Our OTs perform critical work not only for those hampered by physical limitations, but also with mental conditions like Alzheimer’s. Their work with patients suffering from memory loss, dementia, and other issues can be transformative, as they assist spouses and other caregivers through therapy techniques and adaptive devices.
Also contrary to conventional wisdom, many physical therapists and occupational therapists hold advanced degrees, ranging from master’s level to doctorates, from graduate schools of health sciences. They are able to provide such great care, and continuously improve their service, through a combination of cutting-edge education and the benefits of practicing with patients over time.
Some of our patients work with both physical therapists and occupational therapists. For example, we have some patients who have suffered injuries, both requiring surgery and leaving them with a post-operative disability. These patients often go home, where they are first treated by home health nurses, who ensure that patients are recovering according to the doctor’s pre-established standards, as well as physical therapists who work with patients to bring back strength and maximum mobility for their condition. The PT will then turn over the patient to focus on daily tasks, like dressing, showering, and even feeding themselves, while working through a disability or other impairment.
At HealthKeeperz, we are on a God-given mission to do His work in caring for the people of North Carolina. We are blessed to have the best PTs and OTs call HealthKeeperz home, as they bring the best care to the homes of those we are so honored to serve.
For more information about careers at HealthKeeperz, including openings in home-based physical therapy and occupational therapy, visit www.healthkeeperz.com/careers.
“There is nothing better for a man or woman then to eat, drink, and enjoy their work. I have seen that even this is from God's hand, because who can eat and who can enjoy life apart from Him?” “Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for God's glory.”
If you haven’t already, you should re-read those two sentences. It would be natural for you to think that those are my words since I am writing this devotion, but they are not. The first statement is from the Old Testament book, Ecclesiastes. This excerpt, from chapter 2 verse 24, is written by the wisest man that ever lived, King Solomon. The second is quoted from the Apostle Paul's first letter to the Corinthians in chapter 10 verse 31. Just in case you are thinking that Paul and Solomon are prescribing carefree living, allow me to explain how both are calling us to something much more fulfilling.
Solomon is saying that in both rest and work we should find enjoyment, while Paul is saying that God is glorified in both. From the early pages of the Bible, a God-ordained rhythm of work and rest can be seen. The most obvious example being a pattern practiced by God in creation. For six days he labored in creativity, manufacturing, and instructing, and then on the seventh day, He rested. And in the grand story of God's redemption of people, Jesus’ fulfilling and satisfying work in His life, death, and resurrection secure an eternal rest for not only himself but also for all those who have faith in Him.
At HealthKeeperz, we speak much of glorifying God in our day to day work. But with Labor Day upon us, I thought that we should be reminded that God is also glorified in our rest. If you are like most other Americans and me, we rarely rest well at times or on the days given for rest. Now I won't try to define what it means to rest because cutting the grass on Saturday may be enjoyable and even therapeutic for me, but it may be toil for the guy who runs a landscaping company! The only point I want to stress is that we must take our rest. Some will plan a trip to the beach, enjoy the first day of hunting season, or plan the summers last barbecue. Whatever we do, it’s a great time to “rest more than we are.” And I certainly don't mean we should plan trips to the beach every weekend or barbecues every evening, but we should protect the times given in our lives for resting.
Rest is restorative. That means it brings healing. It’s a break from labor and striving, and this is partly why it’s an essential feature of the sacred rest spoken of in the Bible. Rest is peace-giving. So that means rest requires a safe place. In saying this, I don't mean we always need alone time or that rest can only happen in the seclusion from others. When God gave the commandment to have a day set apart unto Him, he gave that command to a community of people, not to an individual. So although sometimes we do need a moment for ourselves, the most fulfilling, satisfying, restorative, and peace-giving rest will come when we are resting with those dearest to us in a way that we all enjoy.
So, guard your rest, take your rest, and bring others to rest with you. Not only on holidays like Labor Day but every week. Lead those around you in God-glorifying rest.
May your rest be sweet!
Yours in Christ,
Chaplain James Chavis
In a recent article for the HealthKeeperz blog, we explained how our company is growing through its commitment to the Community Alternatives Program (CAP), an initiative of North Carolina’s Medicaid program. HealthKeeperz is steadily becoming the managing entity of choice for CAP in some of the state’s poorest, most rural counties, where it’s increasingly critical to help people navigate the options at their disposal for both obtaining care and paying for it, for themselves or their family members.
Let’s take a deeper look at North Carolina Medicaid’s innovative Community Alternatives Program. First, we need to understand that Medicaid-funded home health care includes skilled nursing and therapy services, as well as certain medical supplies and equipment (as long as your physician prescribes them as part of your care plan for a particular condition). It’s also a little-known fact that Medicaid may pay for services more traditionally perceived as personal in nature—bathing, cleaning, meal prep—if your doctor determines that you need this type of assistance in your daily living.
North Carolina has a pair of programs, often referred to as waiver programs, both administered through CAP, that aid in delivering comprehensive health and personal care services to seniors around the state. Let’s take a look at the Community Alternatives Program for Disabled Adults (CAP/DA) and Community Alternatives Program/Choice (CAP/Choice).
Here’s what the two CAP waiver programs have in common: to qualify, you must prove that you need nursing facility care, and that you are at risk of being institutionalized within 30 days of your application. You may also qualify due to blindness or disability.
Now, let’s explain the differences. With CAP/DA, you are eligible to receive a range of home health and personal care services like adult day health, personal care aides, home modification and mobility aids (such as wheelchair ramp installation), meal preparation and delivery, respite services, personal emergency response services, transition services, assistive technology, and case management. In CAP/DA, an agency like HealthKeeperz, through an assigned case manager (usually a social worker), arranges your services and oversees your plan of care for you.
With CAP/Choice, you are able to select and train your own providers in the above areas of service. CAP/Choice thus gives you more control to oversee your care. The program will also pay for people to advise you, such as a personal assistant, care advisor, or even a financial manager.
At HealthKeeperz, we will make every effort to assist you in working with the right programs to pay for your home health and personal care services. When you work within the CAP framework though NC Medicaid, we will have very clear budget parameters, combined with our knowledge of the best local care providers, to achieve your goals, giving you the dignity and better quality of life usually found from staying in your own home.
While many of us have a pretty good idea of what nurses do in hospitals, clinics, and doctors’ offices around the world, sometimes it’s a little harder to picture the duties that nurses perform in the homes of their patients. As a company, HealthKeeperz delivers home-based health care that isn’t any different from the level of care you’d receive in a care facility. In fact, we think that in many cases, receiving home health care is better for you, since you can recover from a surgery or illness, or maintain a better quality of life while dealing with a chronic condition, with dignity and a better quality of life from the safety and comfort of your home.
At HealthKeeperz, Home Health Registered Nurse Case Managers deliver care to our high standards, supervising and working in coordination with colleagues like occupational therapists, physical therapists, and technicians who help with medical devices and equipment. Let’s take a look at some examples of the care our talented registered nurses provide for all of our patients, for the glory of God.
Patients in home-based care environments, just like their counterparts in hospitals and nursing homes, need certain types of care for a variety of reasons, and they receive personalized, one-on-one care from RNs. They may be elderly, disabled, or suffering from chronic or terminal illness. Often, home health care offers the optimal road to recovery from surgeries, accidents, or simply cutting short a hospital stay to bounce back in the privacy and comfort of home.
While home health nurses work with patients on medical needs like medication management (including IV therapies) wound care, and vital sign monitoring, they can also assist with personal care needs like bathing and dressing. The frequency of their patient visits will depend upon a couple of factors: what’s allowable by the patient’s insurance, as well as what’s reasonable to manage the patient’s care based on the condition (s) they are dealing with, either on a short-term or ongoing basis. On average, home health nurses visit their patients two to three times weekly.
During the first visit, a home health nurse will typically evaluate the patient’s health and review an individualized plan of care, as directed by the patient’s doctor. On an ongoing basis, depending on the duration of care, nurses administer medications and assist with pain management, clean and dress wounds, and document symptoms and vital signs. Based on each visit’s findings, nurses may work with doctors to update care plans and make changes to the level of monitoring required.
Nurses play a great role with regard to educating and involving family and friend caregivers, since their contribution is critical to the patient’s recovery and quality of life. Often, this means helping families understand nutritional and fitness needs, as well as keeping the patient safe, helping to avoid recurring hospitalizations. Also with regard to this last point, nurses, are often the first to detect symptoms that could lead to new health issues and even a future hospital visit.
While nurses serve as the main point of contact for patients and their families, in turn, nurses maintain lines of communication with doctors, social workers, and other care professionals as needed.
Finally—and this certainly isn’t the least important attribute of a home health nurse—they must be able to encourage each patient and support them emotionally during their recovery. This last point may be a greater challenge sometimes, since the patient’s home isn’t a controlled environment like a hospital or nursing home. Nurses with great “soft skills,” such as a genuine affection for working with people and their families, will find working with patients in their homes to be quite fulfilling.
We are a growing company, and HealthKeeperz is looking for Home Health Registered Nurse Case Managers, Occupational Therapists, and Physical Therapists to join our incredible team of dedicated home-based professionals and support staff. If you think our mission of caring for all for the glory of God should be your mission, too, follow this link to look at our open positions.
It’s been said that the act of asking for help and openly receiving it is one of the hardest things to do, yet this act is so essential to our well-being in life. Just think for a moment how many times you have helped someone, and you know that without your help, the result would have been, at best, bad, and, at worst, disastrous for that person. You should feel humbled and thankful that your contribution at the moment, whether emotionally, financially, or physically, aided in such a favorable outcome.
However, what if you hadn’t known about this person’s need? What if no one asked for your help? How would you feel, knowing that your friends or family suffered because they didn’t have your help? And you failed to help them, not because you withheld your assistance, but because they wouldn’t ask for it, thus, you had no idea that they needed you.
Some feel that to ask for help is a sign of weakness, as though needing help communicates inferiority to others. Others may not ask for help when they need it because they have no way to return the favor. In the American South, we have successfully elevated the idea of the self-made person to the point that we now boast, “I got this,” in the face of terminal illness, emotional breakdown, spiritual trial, and a host of other personal hardships, all the while reluctant to ask for a little help. Some will say, “I take it to the Lord in prayer.” And to that, I reply, ‘Hallelujah, of course, you should make your requests known to God.” However, don’t forget that God instructs us to share our burdens (needs) with each other.
Galatians 6:2 (ESV)
2 Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
We all need a little help, and sometimes a lot, now and then. It requires humility to ask for help, and no one likes feeling vulnerable. And yet, we are all very vulnerable, living in great need every day. We need God to grant us our next breath. I will have whatever financial means God grants me to have. If I have a need, He will provide. If I have plenty, it’s because He gave it. He superintends it all and designs both want and plenty for my good and His glory.
I guess Job did have the best perspective on the matter. He said, “The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” However, there are times when “we have not, because we ask not.” And it’s in those times that I really what to encourage us to reach out to those around us. And when we are in need, and someone comes along and offers to help, consider this: “Whatever is good and perfect is a gift coming down to us from God our Father…” (James 1:17 NLT) That means when help comes, and it makes a difference, then it came from above.
So, if your friend has the means to help, and you know they would want to help, then allow them the joy of being God’s ambassador of grace. And in due time, you, too, will get the opportunity to serve God and love your friend in a similar way. Because remember, we need each other. That’s why God us placed in families, among friends, and at work together, as we work at HealthKeeperz. People need us every day, and we need them—and God strengthens us for both.
Helping us help each other is how we will care for all people for the glory of God.
Yours in Christ,
Chaplain James Chavis
HealthKeeperz is opening two new offices this summer, serving the rural communities of Robeson and Hertford Counties through the state of North Carolina’s Community Alternatives Program (CAP), a service of NC Medicaid.
The offices, located in Lumberton and Ahoskie, will serve hundreds of patients with integrated case management services to ensure patients are safe and receive quality home healthcare and medical equipment as needed. To meet patient needs in accordance with the company’s high standards of care excellence, HealthKeeperz has added 18 new case manager positions—three in Ahoskie and 15 in Lumberton.
The Community Alternatives Program is a wonderful alternative for many North Carolinians seeking to avoid placement in nursing homes. HealthKeeperz is dedicated to using the CAP program to help seniors maintain their dignity, lead more active lifestyles, and enjoy the safety and comfort of their own homes.
The state of North Carolina designates one case management entity per county, and each agency works with local hospitals and care providers to identify eligible patients. In administering the CAP program across seven North Carolina counties, case managers, who are social workers, work within NC Medicaid-specified budgets to ensure that patients are safe and are receiving services they need.
With the addition of the two new offices, the geographic footprint of the company’s CAP offices and the number of social workers serving hundreds of patients on an ongoing basis are truly impressive. Here’s a breakdown of the company’s current impact on North Carolina’s rural, aging population:
According to HealthKeeperz President Tim Brooks, the CAP program has grown from a small part of what HealthKeeperz does to a key element of company’s business. “Over the last four years, CAP has become central to our business at HealthKeeperz,” he explained. “We are always looking for opportunities to be the agency of choice for the home health needs of rural North Carolinians.”
CAP case managers usually follow a routine with patients, with face-to-face visits complemented by phone calls with each patient. If the patient has a new need for medical equipment, healthcare, or even personal care, the case manager will source the appropriate solution within budget. The program even allows for services like adult day care, as well as home improvements like adding wheelchair-accessible ramps. Each case manager builds great relationships with patients and their families, and the relationships can often last for years.
For Brooks, serving rural communities is not only a point of pride, but central to the company’s mission to care for all for the glory of God. “A few years ago, the state was looking for a provider for the four northeastern NC counties,” he said. “We responded to NC Medicaid’s request for proposals, and I later found out we were the only agency statewide that responded. I had to put my faith in God that this would work for our business.”
“But we tend to do really well in rural areas,” Brooks continued. “God’s hand is on this work, and our Barnabas Culture has now extended to areas of the state quite far from our headquarters. Going rural doesn’t scare us, but our main concern is replicating our culture. Early on, we went up to Elizabeth City to meet with the newly-hired case managers, and we asked them if they could build our culture in northeastern NC. Each of them took this challenge to heart, and I’m convinced they are as close to the heart of HealthKeeperz as any office we have. Validation of my feelings here happened, as Hortensia Ray Alston-Hayes was nominated for a Barnabas Award last year by her Elizabeth City teammates, and she went on to win the Super Barnabas Award for 2018.”
HealthKeeperz is excited by the possibilities of impacting lives of more patients in Hertford and Robeson Counties, all for God’s glory. “These opportunities are where the sovereignty of God has placed us to do well,” explained Brooks. “Our company is from a rural area, and we understand what it’s like to live in these places of high poverty and what that means to people. Even though many of the places where we work are poor, they often have the greatest needs. We, in turn, can do great work, build our Barnabas Culture to care for those at HealthKeeperz who do this hard work every day, and be a God-honoring company in all that we do. Profits aren’t enough—we have to constantly expand what we do, how we care for others for the glory of God as we develop our people and grow our revenues.”
For more information on the Community Alternatives Program where you live, contact HealthKeeperz today.
Last month, we took a moment to “check our connection” with Jesus in the gospel of John, Chapter 15. In that devotion, we said, “fruitfulness and joy in life come from the practice of dependent prayer.” Moreover, in our closing, we looked forward to the rest of that section to John 15, verses 12-17. Here they are.
John 15:12–17 (English Standard Version)
12 “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. 17 These things I command you, so that you will love one another.
I know what you’re thinking. To command someone to love another feels coerced, forced, or manipulating. However, remember Jesus and other Bible writers often use commands as a way of saying ‘since a is true then b is true.’ So it is in this text.
Jesus has already established that love for one another is in the disciples because of their abiding in the vine of Jesus (verses 1-11), and so it is only natural that they do(take action) love one another. The question then remaining is, how does this love manifest itself? Read verse 13 again. “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” Wow! Because we are reading this from the vantage point of 2000 years after these events, we can see that Jesus is calling his disciples to love one another in the same way that he loved them when he went to the cross of Calvary and laid down his life for his friends. In verse 16 Jesus tells his disciples that he chose them for this very purpose, that this type of sacrificial love for one another is what it means to bear fruit by being possessing an intimate relationship with him. Jesus has chosen and empowered his disciples for the labor of loving one another.
So then, what does all this mean for us at HealthKeeperz? It at least suggests that when we say we intend to care for all people for the glory of God, this caring will manifest itself in some sacrificial act and we will be empowered by the very Author of love. To say it another way, when it is our goal to love one another as Christ Jesus has loved us we will have the resources of heaven at our full disposal to accomplish this glorious mission because the power to do so flows directly from Jesus as we cultivate our intimate connection with Him through prayer.
May the Holy Spirit strengthen us in our endeavor of caring for all people for the glory of God.
Yours in Christ,
Chaplain James Chavis