Minnesota Home Care/Hospice Licensure & Medicare Certification


Minnesota law requires certain agencies and individuals that offer home care services for a fee be licensed with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH).

Agencies or individuals that only perform two or more home management tasks (housekeeping, shopping and meal preparation) are required to register with MDH. There are minimal regulations under registration.

The following are descriptions of the two Minnesota home care licenses:

Basic Home Care License

A basic home care provider may provide the following services:

  • Assistance with dressing, self-feeding, oral hygiene, hair care, grooming, toileting, and bathing
  • Providing standby assistance within arm’s reach for safety while performing daily activities
  • Providing verbal or visual reminders to take regularly scheduled medication (includes bringing clients previously set-up medication, medication in original containers, or liquid or food to accompany the medication)
  • Providing verbal or visual reminders to the client to perform regularly scheduled treatments and exercises
  • Preparing modified diets ordered by a licensed health professional
  • Laundry
  • Housekeeping/Other household chores
  • Meal preparation
  • Shopping

Comprehensive Home Care License

A comprehensive home care provider may provide the following services:

  • Advanced Practice Nurse Services
  • Registered Nurse Services
  • Licensed Practical Nurse Services
  • Physical Therapy Services
  • Occupational Therapy Services
  • Speech Language Pathologist Services
  • Respiratory Therapy Services
  • Social Worker Services
  • Services by a Dietitian or Nutritionist
  • Medication Management Services
  • Delegated tasks to unlicensed personnel
  • Hands-on assistance with transfers and mobility
  • Providing eating assistance for clients with complicating eating problems (i.e. difficulty swallowing, recurrent lung aspirations, or requiring the use of a tube, parenteral or intravenous instruments)
  • Complex or Specialty Healthcare Services
  • Assistance with dressing, self-feeding, oral hygiene, hair care, grooming, toileting, and bathing
  • Providing standby assistance within arm’s reach for safety while performing daily activities
  • Providing verbal or visual reminders to take regularly scheduled medication (includes bringing clients previously set-up medication, medication in original containers, or liquid or food to accompany the medication)
  • Providing verbal or visual reminders to the client to perform regularly scheduled treatments and exercises
  • Preparing modified diets ordered by licensed health professional
  • Laundry
  • Housekeeping/Other household chores
  • Meal preparation
  • Shopping

Medicare Certification

Home care licensure is different from Medicare certification. Minnesota requires a home care license for the delivery of certain home care services and the federal government requires certification of agencies offering home care services paid by Medicare (a federal program).

Licensed home care providers may apply to become Medicare certified after being found in substantial compliance with Minnesota home care laws. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid certify home health agencies. Certification requires meeting certain federal standards for delivery of services (such as nursing, therapies, personal care) and fiscal management.

In Minnesota, Medicare-paid home care is only offered through agencies that have a comprehensive home care license in addition to a Medicare certification.

Medicare eligible consumers have the option to seek home care services from a Medicare-certified agency even if that provider is not affiliated with the consumer’s assisted living building.

Minnesota Office of Ombudsman for Long-Term Care

1-800-657-3591