We know you have choices when picking a home health care agency. Allow us to share how we’re different, as well as what we feel our strengths are so you can make an informed decision when choosing a home health care company to best serve your needs.
- Our owner, Norm Dreyer, is a local resident working at our only office/branch/location, the one in Bozeman, Montana. We are not part of a chain or franchise. Locally owned and managed means Norm and his managers are invested in the community on a personal level. All their attention is focused on serving clients in this area.
- You deal with fewer phone calls and less red tape and bureaucracy. Say you have a billing issue or have a concern you want to make sure upper management knows about. One phone call gets you where you need to go. You don’t have to tell your “story” to several people. Our owner and managers of all departments work in the same office.
- Most likely you came to Montana for the friendly western hospitality where no one is a stranger. If you haven’t discovered that yet about Montana, you will. We’re proud of our Montana roots, and that we get the privilege of treating you authentically the Montana way.
You get cared for by us—an agency, that’s rated #1 in patient satisfaction. We’re proud of the highest 5-star rating we receive year after year by former patients surveyed by Medicare. We’ve worked hard to achieve this #1 ranking and are proud that we consistently maintain the highest levels in the areas that mean the most to our clients: how they’re treated, how we communicate, and how they feel after our home health care services are completed.
Dealing with an injury or illness is challenging enough so we strive to make the in-home caregiving process easy for you and your family. Staying with one home care agency throughout your health care journey—“continuity of care”—has some very important benefits:
- fewer phone calls
- less paperwork
- fewer, if any, trips to the doctor
- reduced stress of new “strangers” in your home. You stay with the same caregiving team—those with whom you’ve become familiar and have developed a rapport.
As you get to know each member of the team caring for you—from the aides, nurses, and therapists walking into your home, to the nurse case manager and receptionist back at the office—a comfort level develops providing you a level of peace, which allows you to focus on your healing. Dealing with one agency reduces “red tape” and gives you added peace of mind. Read how this continuity of care model works in a real world scenario at the bottom of this page.
We require our caregivers to receive their CNA certification (certified nursing assistant). This is the highest level a home health aide can attain. CNAs have that higher level of professional training along with the knowledge and skill to serve you in the best way possible.
Many seniors move slower, think slower, and are experiencing or beginning to experience a level of forgetfulness. This condition requires a certain kind of compassion, understanding, and professional training by the person assigned to take care of them.
We’re proud that the state of Montana chose us, First Choice Home Health, to be the first health care agency in the state to go through Montana’s Apprenticeship program for dementia care, a nationally accredited training course. You can feel confident that our CNA caregivers will provide that extra level of care, kindness, and patience needed for those experiencing some level of dementia.
Many of our employees are long tenured, some with the company for more than a decade. Employees that stay with one company for an extended period of time mean they are happier and content with their job and their employer. That contentment and joy in the workplace is passed on to you, the client, in terms of better care—not only kind and gracious care, but also highly skilled care in all areas so you recover quickly and peacefully. All this comes back to us through the high ratings on our surveys in the areas of client satisfaction.
Most home care agencies require a minimum of four hours per day of in-home caregiving commitment or some other large block of time. We know that sometimes that just doesn’t work for you, that you may just need an hour or two. First Choice Home Health allows a one-hour minimum visit time so that you aren’t stuck paying for more than what you really need and want.
Norm is not just a businessman, a number cruncher, who decided to open a home health care agency. Thirty years ago, Norm started his professional career as an occupational therapist out of a desire to work one-on-one with clients helping them in their recovery process. As his career progressed, he was drawn to the nursing home setting becoming a nursing home administrator. This is where his heart to serve the elderly and those who are ill was birthed.
Upon landing in Montana, Norm used his knowledge of running a company along with his experience working hands-on with clients as an occupational therapist to open First Choice Home Health. It’s not uncommon for Norm to show up in his First Choice Home Health shirt to a patient’s home when he’s filling in for one of his OTs who is on vacation. Norm absolutely loves the hands-on personal side of serving clients through home health care.
Example of Continuity of Care in Action
When you choose First Choice Home Health you’re assured to have the same consistent level of care no matter where you or a loved one are on the health care continuum. Here’s an example of how continuity of care works:
Your mother we’ll call Mary needs a caregiver, or home health aide as they’re called, to help with bathing, dressing, and light meal preparation in the morning. We send one of our CNAs we’ll call Claire to help Mary seven days a week for four hours in the morning.
Now, Mary develops a medical condition (say an irregular heartbeat that is affecting her energy level) where she needs to go to the hospital for tests and stay overnight. You, the son or daughter, are very busy working so Claire or one of our qualified medical service drivers (all trained in CPR) can drive your mother, Mary, there.
After three days in the hospital, Mary is discharged, but again, you’re unable to drive her home so we can help with that. Our medical service driver, trained to assist clients getting out of the hospital, picks Mary up at the hospital and drives her home. On the way, the driver stops at the grocery store to pick up a few items as well as Mary’s prescription. Once at home, our driver walks Mary to the door and gets her settled back inside.
Mary’s doctor has ordered home health care so Mary can continue healing at home. Our home health nurse now comes by every other day for two weeks to draw blood, check vitals, and report Mary’s health status to her doctor.
Mary is very weak from being in the hospital and is now unsteady on her feet. Our physical therapist will come to Mary’s home two to three times a week for several weeks to guide her through some exercises. The therapist will also educate you, the family member, as well as Mary herself to continue these exercises on her own.
Meanwhile, Mary’s home health aide, Claire, can continue to come by as necessary to ensure Mary gains back the level of independence she’s used to. When Mary’s doctor and nurse feels she has recovered, she will be discharged from Medicare Part A (skilled nursing and therapy) and can be considered for Medicare Part B, which allows her continue physical and occupational therapy at home if need be. Her aide, Claire, with whom she’s developed a rapport, continues to be a friendly face, source of comfort and big help throughout the whole ordeal and is available to help out for any length of time.
With other agencies in town, you’ll need to use several different companies for all these services: home health aide from one agency; nursing and therapy from another agency; transportation from yet another company; and Medicare Part B from yet another agency. Not with First Choice Home Health. We set up our company so we can meet all your home health needs. No jumping around meeting new faces and getting to know new systems. The above scenario is an example of how we can provide every medical professional needed as you or loved one’s health care needs change.
Continuity of care—staying with one home care agency, First Choice Home Health—is a service clients tell us they prefer and choose time and time again because it reduces the stress and anxiety of having different people coming in the home, meeting new people all the time, and learning a new company’s system of doing things. We hope this explanation helps you understand how we’re different and how we can make your home health journey effortless, calm, and peaceful.
Serving Gallatin County by providing compassionate skilled health care and private duty services to those in need.
Striving every day to be Gallatin County’s First Choice in home health care and personal care!