Seniors who live independently require extra help in their activities of daily living.
Additionally, patients recovering or receiving treatment from home also need to be closely monitored by a professional caregiver.
In such situations, home care becomes an essential part of the care program.
Home care is when a medical or personal caregiver provides care directly to the patient at the comfort of their home or within an assisted living facility.
It includes a visit from physicians or registered nurses or generalized care like personal care or companionship from home care aides.
Research finds that home care lowers costs, reduces hospital stays and readmissions, and improves health outcomes.
Also known as private duty nursing or home-based skilled nursing, it is for seniors or individuals who need medical care for disabilities or chronic conditions.
It broadly describes a range of general assistance services and in-home health care for seniors or patients experiencing injury or illness.
It is provided by either registered nurses (RNs) or licensed practical nurses (LPNs).
They focus on specialized medical care like:
- Wound care
- Ostomy care
- Administering medication
- Ostomy care
- Pain management and control
- Intravenous therapy
- Monitoring a patient’s general condition
- Post-Surgical Care
- Post-Hospitalization Care
Professional, experienced, and licensed private duty nurses are available through home care agencies for live-in care, 24-hour care, or on an hourly basis.
Non-Medical Home Care
Provided by a personal care profession, non-medical home care is aimed at assisting with activities of daily living.
The aides are not medical professionals however, they are trained to help persons living with disabilities, those struggling with chronic illness, or age.
Some of the services include:
- Personal care: It includes bathing, grooming, assisting with bedpans, transfers, repositioning bed-bound clients to prevent skin breakouts, ambition, feeding, medication reminders, and accompanying clients to appointments.
- Companions: They provide the needed stimulation and contact with the outside world through engaging the client in activities such as reading, projects, visiting friends, recording memories, helping with organization, conversation, gardening, and games.
- Home Makers: Help in basic activities such as meal planning and preparation, light housekeeping, shopping, errands, serving meals, and shopping.
- Palliative/Hospice Care Support
Palliative care offers compassionate care by providing relief from physical strain, symptoms, mental tension, the emotional stress of a serious and long-term illness.
While under the supervision and guidance of the primary physician, caregivers can ensure that the patient is comfortable.
Through palliative care, patients can be involved in activities of daily living with the long-term goal of restoring their independence.
This kind of support is effective for patients with conditions such as cancer, kidney disease, AIDS, or side effects from the treatment they are receiving.
Hospice care on the other hand is compassionate comfort and non-curative care for people with terminal illnesses and have less than six months to live.
- Respite Care
Family caregivers or professional caregivers also need rest and time to tend to personal activities.
They therefore need respite care which allows a professional caregiver to come in and provide care in their absence.
The beauty of respite care is that caregivers do not have to worry about the well-being or safety of their loved ones or patients as they are safe and well taken care of by professional caregivers or home care aides.
Caregivers step in to ease the patient’s pain while helping the patient’s family prepare for their loved one’s end of life as in most cases the patient is not expected to recover.
Related Article: Home Care Services: Hospice Care and Palliative Care
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