Reply To: 79 year old 1.5 months on ventilator GBS/CIDP

October 16, 2013 at 8:00 pm

Home healthcare may be an option to consider. Ventilator-dependent patients can be treated at home through this approach. Your doctor must write prescriptions for the durable medical equipment, supplies, and the home healthcare services required. Medicare partially covers home healthcare of this type. Coverage may vary depending on what supplemental insurance your Dad has.

The Medicare website is not being maintained due to the government shutdown, but here is a link to their home health pdf guide:,d.cGE

I have used 5 home healthcare agencies in the LA area (including 2 for IVIG) and can say that prices and services vary, as do the quality and quantity of equipment and supplies (they tend to give too many supplies so they can bill for them). You may wish to research home healthcare agencies in your area and provide a recommendation to your doctor (or he/she will use whatever agencies they have a relationship with).

Here is a good article covering things to consider when transferring a ventilator-dependent patient to a home environment:

I was on a ventilator for almost 3 weeks after getting GBS/CIDP/MFS. I could hear almost everything that was said around me, but couldn’t talk or feed myself. Then I was weaned off the ventilator and became able to breath on my own again. Feeding myself took several months longer and I was at risk of getting food in my lungs if I swallowed wrong. I had daily breathing treatments and exercises for nearly a year before I was back on my own.

I hope your father recovers quickly.