Sometimes a sitter is needed round-the-clock for a frail senior. In this directory, “live-in help” refers to a sitter (one person) who lives full-time in the home of an older person to provide care. However, there is a shortage of this kind of service. More often, agencies (see Home Health Care and Personal Support Service Agencies) provide 24-hour care, which, in this book, refers to different people who work in shifts to provide 24/7 coverage.
There are advantages and disadvantages to each kind of service, depending on what the needs are. Not all agencies will use the same terminology that is used here; know what kind of care you want, and ask specific questions when shopping for round-the-clock sitters. This service is not covered by Medicare, Medicaid, TennCare, or private insurance. Some long-term-care insurance will cover patients who have a medical diagnosis that requires live-in help.