The Home Visit

The Operation House Call Home Visit:  Instructions for Students

Special Note: During the COVID-19 health crisis home visits have been done virtually.  As we move forward into 2022 some schools are offering in home visits again, with certain restrictions.   Please refer to your class information for details.  Further instructions are below.


Operation House Call believes that families have much to teach about loving and raising a child with significant developmental differences. This includes, but is not limited to, their personal experience in receiving care from health care professionals.

During class you and a partner are given your family host assignment. Your family will be waiting for your contact, ideally within a day or two of class. You and your partner should schedule a home visit that is convenient to their needs.  In 2020 and 2021 this may be a Zoom visit.  (Please refer to your school’s OHC class assignment directions.)

The home visit gives you the opportunity to meet an individual with a disability and their family during a time uncomplicated by the need for acute care.  You are expected to interact with all members of the family present, to ask questions, to listen and observe. Families will want you to meet and get to know their child/children or adult family member with developmental disability as well.  In person this would be by talking or playing.  On Zoom your host family may want to split the time so you can greet their family member with IDD separately from a conversation with parents.  We ask you to flex to the needs of the host family.

Families will expect you to guide your learning with questions. You are not expected to do any personal care or to advise the family on medical issues. Sample questions are provided on the website to help each student guide their own learning. However feel free to ask your own questions, keeping in mind the need to do so in sensitive manner. Families welcome the chance to help you learn in any way they can.

Important: It is a program expectation that you reach your host family promptly! (ie: within the time frame given in your OHC class directions.)  However, these are busy families and they can be hard to reach, so leave an email, make a telephone call, and keep trying.  You can contact your OHC Parent Instructor or OHC Family Coordinator if there are problems you truly cannot resolve. Please take responsibility to follow through on these expectations.  To prevent problems or distress for families we must note that failure to meet these expectations will risk a note of unprofessional behavior in your record.