Mildred’s Trip to the Hospital
Imagine 80-year-old Mildred, who has been living in the same home for more than 50 years. Eight years ago, her husband passed, and she has since been living alone. Two of her three children live nearby, and she sees them about once a week.
Last month, Mildred tripped on a cord in her living room and broke her hip. She had hip replacement surgery and moved into a nursing home rehab center, where she has had three meals a day served to her, clothing provided, physical therapy in her room, constant companionship, supervision of medications, and help with showering and dressing.
Now she’s about to head back home – alone. She will still need 3 meals a day, laundry, and help with showering and dressing. She also has to go to her physical therapy appointments twice a week and would benefit from medication support and daily companionship.
Her children work full-time and can only help her occasionally – and they’ve been wondering if it’s time to move Mom into an assisted living community. However, they know how much Mom loves her home and they want to support her desire to age in place for as long as possible.
Avoiding Post-Hospital Syndrome
A hospital stay can be especially treacherous for seniors, who can be left vulnerable to problems with medications, depression when left alone, and higher likelihood for re-injury from a fall while showering, cooking, or simply moving throughout their home.
The National Association of Area Agencies on Aging found that 20% of Medicare patients are re-admitted to the hospital within 30 days. Sometimes they can’t get transportation to their primary care physician or are confused by their care instructions – and in other cases, they are simply sent home too soon.
Fortunately, Medicare penalties have been shining a light on preventable readmissions, and hospitals are taking steps to help address this problem. Family caregivers play a valuable role at this time, but when they are unavailable, home care professionals are there to help.
Is It Time for You to Get Help?
With home care services provided by Assisting Hands of Columbus, you can make sure your loved one is cared for when you can’t be there. A wide variety of support services are available, from companionship to transportation, medication support to personal hygiene help, prepared meals to pet care.
If you or your loved one is facing a difficult transition from hospital or rehab to home, contact Assisting Hands of Columbus today. We can be there within a few hours to create a care plan that will work for you. By being pro-active and adding more support at the beginning of this transition, you’ll help your loved one get back to their highest level of function as quickly as possible.