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FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

How do patients access home infusion services?

Patients who need extended intravenous therapy are given choices to obtain it from a clinic, an infusion center, or a home infusion. The patient is referred by the nurse discharge planner, social worker, or possibly the physician to receive home infusion. On some occasions, patients will inquire directly, and the home infusion company will work directly with the provider and the patient to plan a successful transition to home.

What are the potential benefits of home infusion?

Patients often prefer home infusion because it is safe, comfortable, and convenient. Home infusion allows patients to recover at home and return to normal lives. In addition, patients avoid exposure to sources of infection which is especially important for those recovering from a major medical event (or a medical illness) and patients with weakened immune systems.

For some patients, home infusion is also more affordable because they are able to go back to work and because home infusion typically costs less than receiving the same therapy in a hospital or clinic, patients’ financial responsibility with their medical insurance often is less. Home infusion is also cost-efficient for insurance companies.

Do insurance companies cover home infusion services?

The vast majority of commercial insurance companies cover home infusion services including the medications, clinical monitoring, and nursing visits. It is covered under the patient’s medical plan, which also covers hospitalizations and doctor’s visit. Rochester Home Infusion will call your insurance company, determine coverage, and explain your specific coverage benefits before starting therapy. We will also bill your insurance directly for the services.

Medicare covers some home infusion therapies and are considered on a case by case basis.

How will my family members and I learn how to give my intravenous medication?

Whenever possible, a clinical nurse from Rochester Home Infusion will meet with you in the hospital or clinic before discharge. The nurse will answer your questions about how your medication will be given, how your care will be coordinated with your physician, and address any concerns you may have.

A nurse will visit you in the home right after being discharged and show you and your family member involved in your care how to give your medication. A set of written instructions will be provided including contact information for a 24 hours support line. A clinical nurse and pharmacist are ready to answer any questions and concerns that you may have and if needed contact your physician and/or provide a nurse visit at home.

How are medications given in the home setting?

Our goal is to make your IV therapy at home as easy as possible so you resume your normal daily activities. 
The following are some examples how your medication will be given at home:

  • Intramuscular – Medication is in a syringe and is given by direct injection in the muscle.
  • Subcutaneous – Medication is in a syringe and is given by direct injection into the fat tissue below the skin.
  • Intravenous – In most cases, the medication given in the bloodstream, using an intravenous line, and is infused using with or without pump as described below.

Medication Delivery Without a Pump

  • Intravenous push – The medication is contained in a syringe, given in the bloodstream using intravenous line, over 3 to 5 minutes.  This method can be used for therapies lasting a couple of days, weeks, or months. 
  • Eclipse Device – The medication is in a reservoir, like a ball, and is connected to your line and will self-infuse over 30 to 60 minutes depending on the medication. The eclipse can either go in a fanny pack or a trouser pocket depending on the size. 

pump3.jpg pump2.jpg pump1.jpg Medication Delivery with a Pump

We use a variety of pumps to deliver medications in safest and most convenient approach possible.  The pumps deliver medications at a steady rate, and allow greater mobility than the traditional IV pole.  

  • Mechanical Pump — The medication is in a syringe and is needed to be given over a certain period of time using a mechanical pump.   The mechanical pump only has two buttons: speed setting and start.  The syringe pump can go inside a backpack for increased mobility.
  • Computerized Ambulatory Pump — Certain medications require a computerized pump to deliver it to your bloodstream.  We will only use a computerized pump if it is needed due to the nature of the medication and how it needs to be given at home. The pump is pre-programmed by a pharmacist or a nurse, double-checked, and the settings are locked before reaching your home.   The pump and medication is contained in a fanny pack or a back pack allowing you to be as mobile and active as possible.  Your nurse will teach you how to connect and disconnect from your pump and your pharmacist will make the medication set up as easy as possible.  A 24 hour clinician support line is always available and, if needed, a nurse is on call to visit you anytime.

Rochester Home Infusion’s goal is to make the medication set up as simple as possible, easy to learn, sustainable long term, and compatible to your active life-style.  

How will my home infusion therapy be managed?

Your physician will be actively engaged in your in-home therapy. Rochester Home Infusion sends regular updates on how you are doing with your therapy, how your condition is improving, and your laboratory tests results to your physician. If needed, we will contact your physician for medical issues needing to be addressed immediately. In addition, your physician will contact you and RHI directly if there is a change in plan with your therapy. Your nurse is also engaged with your pharmacist and physician in making sure that your care plan is implemented and that progress is observed during the course of your therapy.