BrightStar Care

time icon 7 min read update icon Sept. 20, 2019
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If you are looking for in-home professional care for a loved one, BrightStar Care offers many levels of care.

Members of the baby boom generation began reaching their senior years in 2011. Most have indicated that they want to remain at home where they are comfortable for as long as possible. When a loved one needs help with everyday tasks, where do you turn? It can be a difficult decision. BrightStar Care makes some of these decisions easier by providing answers to your questions. 

The company offers elder care based on the level of need and where the senior lives, be it at home or a nursing home. If your loved one needs companionship, BrightStar is there. If your loved one needs high-tech nursing care, BrightStar is there. Each location is led by a Registered Nurse Director of Nursing, who ensures that the company delivers expert, compassionate and personal care.

Grandfolk Scoring
Cost 10/10
Ease 10/10
Customer support 10/10
Caregiver 10/10
Medication support 10/10
Warranty 10/10
Cancellation 10/10
Private insurance 10/10
What is the cost of the service?
Cost varies based on level of need, time and location
Is the service easy to use?
Very easy. Contact a local office to schedule a personal assessment
Customer support
When is customer service available?
The nursing staff is available 24/7
Is one caregiver assigned to my loved one?
Caregivers are matched based needs and personality traits
Medication support
Can the company administer medications?
What if my needs change?
As needs change, the company can provide appropriate assistance
Is it easy to cancel the service?
Yes. There is no long-term contract, so you can make changes
Private insurance
Can the company help with insurance matters?
Yes, the company can work with your insurance or long-term care agency
Age Score:
50-64 Years
65-74 Years
75-84 Years

BrightStar Care was originally created to address the care of seniors who want to stay in their homes. However, it has expanded to include support of new mothers, individuals with disabilities, accident victims, and anyone of any age in need of support. The company can also provide respite for regular caregivers, as well as nanny services for young children. 

BrightStar’s mission is to provide a higher standard of home care than the industry standard. Company standards ensure that the staff is professional, experienced and ready to help at any time of day or night. Therefore, any person of any age can be supported by the services provided by BrightStar.

Health Score:
Great Health
Good Health
Fair Health
Poor Health

For seniors in great or good health, BrightStar’s services will most likely not be needed. Once a senior’s health begins to fail, BrightStar can provide the support that is necessary in each individual situation. The company is aware of how difficult it can be to find qualified care for a senior who wants to remain at home. So, upon receiving a call, BrightStar’sNurse Manager will meet with the family in person and assess the loved one’s needs. 

BrightStar can offer as little as one hour per week, or round-the-clock nursing support. If your loved one is suffering from dementia, a caregiver with special training in this area will be provided. For those who need medication support, the caregiver can either provide regular reminders, or give injections to those whose physicians require them. For almost any situation, BrightStar can meet the need.


  • Nursing staff is available 24/7.
  • All caregivers have at least one year of experience, and most have advanced training. 
  • The company employs rigorous recruiting and screening practices to ensure excellent care.
  • Nurse Managers must have at least three years of management experience and experience working with older adults.
  • BrightStar encourages each of its locations to earn the Joint Commission Gold Seal of accreditation.
  • BrightStar uses its “Guaranteed Compatibility” program to match caregivers with clients.


  • Each BrightStar location is independently owned and operated, so there may be a variation in care provided through each location. 
  • The company has had complaints of inability to retain nursing staff.
  • Customers have complained that caregivers have failed to show up for scheduled times, or have not provided care as promised.
  • The CEO has been sued by franchisees over alleged broken promises. 
  • As with other in-home care solutions, Medicare will not cover this type of care.

Bottom Line:

BrightStar Care has found the formula for providing various levels of care to people of any age who needsupport. The family-owned company is about 15 years old. It uses stringent guidelines for hiring caregivers, including an interview, review of skills, background checks, reference checks and drug testing. All new hires must have at least one year of experience before employment with BrightStar. Each franchise is overseen by a Registered Nurse Director of Nursing. Each office is urged to attain certification by the Joint Commission, an organization that strives to continuously improve care for the public. This is a winning combination in most situations. 

However, there have been reports by franchisees of difficulty obtaining support as promised by the company. As with any franchise system, even when certain standards are required, there are instances of lax oversight or poor supervision in some offices. Unfortunately, this can leave some clients with a poor experience. Overall, BrightStar is known for its excellent care. When care is provided by a registered nurse, you can expect that the hourly rate will be higher than for less qualified caregivers. If you are willing to pay for the care provided by RNs, then this is the organization to hire.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What types of home care services are provided?

BrightStar can provide any level of care that is necessary for the situation. The organization offers a variety of services depending on need, including companionship services, transportation to doctor’s appointments, support for seniors suffering from dementia, and high-tech nursing care. The company can also help new moms learning to care for their newborns, or provide additional support when a child has special needs.

How are applicants screened for employment?

All applicants undergo rigorous screening, including a personal interview, a criminal background check and drug screen test. Each caregiver must have at least one year of experience, and most have advanced training. 

How will I know if the care has been provided?

BrightStar Care’s mission is to make sure clients feel comfortable. To this end, a large part of what the company does is maintaining a rigorous process for recruiting, screening, onboarding and retaining its care professionals. RNs make supervisory visits for personal care and skilled service cases at 60-day intervals. 

More Information:

Product Details

Overview: BrightStar Care offers care of any level (including skilled nursing care) in any location where a senior is living. It can provide in-home care or nursing home care. The company can also assist when a senior is in the hospital or is transitioning from one situation to another. 

Package Details: Care begins with a ‘living room visit,’ during which the family will meet with the Registered Nurse Director of Nursing, who will provide a comprehensive assessment of the need. The RN will then provide a personalized care plan for the senior in need. This plan will include the level of care and the number of hours per week that will be provided. 

Other Services: BrightStar offers sitters and nanny services, if necessary.

Additional Company Details

Contract Details: There is no long-term contract to sign. The individualized care plan is created to guide the care team in supporting a senior and their family. You can change the level of care or hours needed as the situation changes. The company is aware that changes can occur quickly, and will work with the family to make the necessary adjustments.

Warranty: BrightStar uses a proprietary system called ‘Guaranteed Compatibility’ to match a caregiver to each client. However, you can ask for a different caregiver if the match is not working. If a caregiver is ill when they are scheduled to visit, the office will ensure that a qualified replacement arrives instead. 

Accreditations: Various BrightStar Care offices have A+ ratings with the BBB, while others have lower ratings or are not accredited. The main headquarters of the company urges franchisees to attain certification by the Joint Commission. The Joint Commission is an independent, non-profit organization that accredits and certifies almost 21,000 health care organizations and programs in the U.S. It is recognized as a symbol of quality reflecting commitment to performance standards.BrightStarhas been recognized by Press Ganey and Home Care Pulse Client Satisfaction surveys. In the Home Care Pulse Client Satisfaction survey of 2014, nine out of ten clients said they would recommend BrightStar.

Company Details: Bright Star Care is a family-owned company founded by Shelly and J.D. Sun in 2002, after having a less-than-ideal experience in hiring a home care provider for J.D.’s grandmother. The company’s first office was in Gurnee, Illinois. After opening two more offices, the company became a franchise in 2005. It now has over 300 franchises across the country. The company’s mission is to provide a full complement of home care for people of all ages — from infants to seniors — as well as to provide medical staffing for healthcare facilities. Its goal is to provide 24/7 service and ensure that there is RN oversight on every case. 


BrightStar Group Holdings, Inc.
1125 Tri-StatePkwy., #700
Gurnee, IL 60031
Tel: 866-618-7827

Donna McDurfee - Senior Advisor

Donna is senior researcher with Grandfolk® providing in-depth product and service reviews to empower senior buying decisions.