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3 Ways In-Home Care Can Reduce Senior Medical Visits

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January 6, 2015

As a senior caregiving professional, you’re probably aware of the many ways non-medical in-home care benefits older adults. But did you know in-home care may actually reduce the number of medical visits by seniors?

Aging can bring along a host of physical and cognitive issues, from mild to severe. Research shows a correlation between in-home care and reduced doctor visits for seniors with conditions across the spectrum. Why does in-home care help keep seniors safe and healthy at home? Here are three reasons.

  1. One-on-one caregiving means closer monitoring and better compliance. For seniors with memory impairment, maintaining a medication regimen can be difficult. If a person takes a medication more often than directed, an overdose can occur. Or, if a person takes a medication less often than prescribed, it may appear the medicine isn’t working. Either situation can lead to additional doctor visits to adjust medication dosages, perhaps unnecessarily. A professional in-home caregiver can help ensure seniors take their medications on time, every time. This one-on-one caregiving also can help prevent falls, improve diet and hydration and address related issues to help avoid non-routine medical visits.
  2. Incidental transportation makes necessary doctor visits more efficient. Older adults with mild arthritis or other conditions that cause mobility problems may have to give up driving. This can cause a senior to feel stressed about how they’re going to get to a medical appointment and even cause them to miss routine appointments. A professional caregiver can transport seniors to their appointments, take notes in the exam room and then return them to their home. Enabling routine preventive care may help seniors avoid the emergency room or urgent care.
  3. Tracking symptoms can head off health problems. When seniors have a chronic health concern like diabetes or Parkinson’s disease, tracking symptoms can help avert an emergency room trip. Many Home Instead Senior Care® CAREGivers have specialized training that enables them to identify subtle symptoms that may otherwise go unnoticed. If a CAREGiver notices a change in the senior’s condition, he or she can then implement a pre-determined plan to alert the family and get appropriate care for the older family member before the situation becomes an emergency. This is just one way professional in-home caregiving can potentially reduce senior medical visits.

Professional, in-home caregiving may help reduce the number of medical visits a senior must endure, and it also may help relieve the stress of family caregivers who desire better communication with medical professionals. One thing’s for sure: in-home care means more care. And more care can contribute to better health outcomes for seniors.

Download the whitepaper: “Paid In-Home Care: More Care & Better Care for Seniors”  to learn more about how professional home care services for seniors can yield better outcomes.

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Thoughts and stories from others
  1. April 7, 2015 at 10:24 pm | Posted by Valerie

    This article goes to the heart of the continuum of care. Doctor's visits by seniors are ranked to be the most frequent and apart from the cost of a love one taking them to a doctor's visit, it cost them to take time off from work to facilitate the visits if their parents are unable to do so by themselves. In the case of a caregiver which I was for a number of years, you establish that companion relationship with that client, you supervise his medication, daily shower, you do range of motion exercises, takes him or her for walks, doctor's visits, supervise and prepare his meals in a balance way and make sure he is sleeping at nights. If he is up you ensure his safety. This certainly reduces the frequent visits to the doctor and reduces the cost to Medicare and other health insurance. I agree with this article and I think more people are realizing the benefit of this type of caregiving, but Home Care Aides are not recognized as they should, there are not many benefits for them and when they do live on premises, there are hardly any time off for them at nights. Many sleeps with a baby monitor in their rooms. I think this aspect of health care needs to be revised as well.

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