The Medicare Homebound Rule and all this weird new stuff

October 13, 2010 at 1:23 PM (Uncategorized) (, , , , )

So I’ve been told I have been approved for supports in the home.  (What I’ll call Shoes and Showers and Cooking and Cleaning…)

It’s my understanding that I may have to become an employer, I believe I have a care allowance from the state and I have to oversee withholding and payment etc. of the PCA.

They’re supposed to contact me shortly.

And the Medicare homebound rule, which I’ve been following anyway, must now apply to me very strictly or else the lovely powerchair I just got could be taken away….or worse my benefits suspended.

It’s “the chair was  given to you to help you around your home.”  “absences must be infrequent and of short duration.”  Driving, understandably, is an instant no-no.  Thankfully the property here is large with an inside courtyard and even a deli and a restaurant on the property.

Stuff that is allowed:

Church (can’t abridge that religious freedom, you know.)

Medical Appointments (They weren’t even covering “adult day care” for Alzheimers or dementia patients as “allowed” until 2005! WTF)

Occasional family gatherings:

Birthdays, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day.

Weddings, funerals, graduations…also ok. Thank God. I have to try to sing at my cousin’s wedding in June.

Then, there are the things below that are not allowed technically because they don’t fall under the “short duration” wording of the rule:

Movies, plays (unless a family member is in them…) concerts, (This part *kills me.* Just kills me. I haven’t been able to make these much anyway, (I’ve had to head home from movies I like several times in the last two years because of sudden illness…)  but I’d like to be able to try to see one first run film every two months!  (What about Netflix or the library…Yes, I use both, but half the fun of these things is discoursing about the new movies when they come out 😦  )

Sporting events, (No big problem at all there…)

non-absolutely necessary window shopping.

Bookstore or coffee shop crawling. (pout.)

(I won’t have the money to shop for books, or DVD’s…and if I did, I’d do it online anyhow.)

And I suppose dinners out with non-family aren’t permitted either.

(Those are triggers for food I shouldn’t eat anyway, but dinners are always catalysts for great conversations…)
It’s assumed the support person will help me shop for food. I really don’t know how clothes shopping is handled.

They watch a lot.  Don’t doubt it.  They have to be hard***es because of the expense of Medicare and Medicaid.  I get it.  (It amazes me how difficult it is to get onto.  Everyone who says, “lazy” people get on Medicaid…” Wrong. ) I’ve heard of people losing their Medicare over a baseball game, and two stories of wheelchairs being repo’d. No Lie. (of course once I hit 65, this wouldn’t apply to me…)

I think a specific number of cultural or sporting events should be permitted, with friends, (what about people who don’t *have* family, or don’t have family within an hour or so ? Sheesh. ) say six times a year. You use whatever your hobby is, do it as close to home as possible, (likely I’d try,  and miss some anyhow…)

So, I’ll be “holding court” a lot, because of course, family, friends can come to see me without restriction.




  1. bridgett said,

    I’m glad you’re finally getting some services. It’s easy for me to say “don’t make yourself nuts worrying about governmental/insurance spies skulking
    around” — it’s not like you’re going to take your so-called “free” chair (the
    one you worked for twenty-five years and took payroll deductions each
    week to earn) and suddenly hop on a plane to go water-skiing in Aruba.
    However, you know the likelihood of surveillance better than I do — I want
    to think the gov has better things to do than to do a stake-out of a
    largely homebound person on the off-chance she feels up to going to
    the movies or to church…but there’s another part of me that thinks
    that’s just the sort of idiotic thing some agency would do.

    So the rule is that we will provide you tools to increase your mobility as long as you can demonstrate you will not have much need of them? That
    is messed up.

  2. Holly Salsman said,

    It just amazes me how strict the list is of places that are allowed and not allowed! Does nobody consider mental well-being as a part of overall health? That if you’re having a particular day where you feel strong and well enough to take in a movie, that you should be allowed to without risking your way of making a living being taken away from you!

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