Home Health Care offers sick, elderly options to 'facility care'

Home Health Care is cheaper than living in a facility.
Home Health Care is cheaper than living in a facility.

HARTSELLE, AL (WAFF) - Sarah Johnson, 83, has lived in the same Hartselle house for nearly 30 years. She's limited with what she can do now because of congestive heart failure, chronic kidney disease, and fluid swelling.

She said she would rather be here than anywhere else.

"I can get up and do whatever I want to do when I feel like it. And I can get up and walk around in the house, you know, outside - I just love home," said Johnson.

Registered Nurse Susie McMillian with the local health department checks Johnson's vitals. She also weighs her, checks her blood pressure and oxygen level.

"Home Health Care is a program that allows the elderly, infirmed to remain at home as long as they can," said McMillian.

Home Health Care is also cheaper than living in a facility.

Johnson said she has become attached to the ladies and gentlemen that come in to help her.

Experts say there are many benefits to the patients.

"We offer physical therapy and skilled nursing, baby services for people who really otherwise wouldn't have any other options. They would be destined for a nursing home or they don't have kin folks to help take care of them," said McMillian.

She said patients like Johnson also become like family to health care providers - even the aides who can help with bathing and other chores.

"For instance, last Sunday I came by and the left side of her face was very swollen and her left arm was very swollen and she was in bed and that's not normal for her. And I was concerned and I sent her to the ER and she was building up fluid," said McMillian.

Johnson is hopeful the visits can continue and she can live at home a little longer and enjoy the company.

There are several web sites devoted to home health care.  Do some research before "jumping in" and make certain your choice of options best suits your needs.

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