June 30, 2014
As yesterday’s baby boomers become today’s seniors, the medical care system is struggling to adapt to an influx of older adult patients. This rapid growth of the senior population prompts some important questions: Are senior care professionals offering the best possible care and care options to their older patients? How might our current systems be improved to better serve the needs of an aging population? What tools are currently not being utilized that could enhance senior patient care across the care continuum?
Optimizing the Continuum with In-Home Care
While the delivery of senior care differs with each individual’s needs and circumstances, the fundamental care continuum is generally the same for all. At the beginning of the spectrum, seniors are able to care for their own needs at home. As aging progresses, so does movement across the care continuum. The senior’s family typically becomes more engaged, more intense medical care becomes necessary, and finally, the continuum ends with some form of hospice or end-of-life care.
Home Instead, Inc., franchisor of the Home Instead Senior Care® network, has set out to optimize the continuum and improve the quality of care for seniors by introducing a care model that provides opportunities to maximize care effectiveness and efficiency. The network’s model of in-home non-medical care can fit seamlessly into all parts of the senior care continuum and help reshape the current system to better serve the needs of the growing senior population.
Benefits of Introducing In-Home Care Across the Continuum
Non-medical in-home care services like those offered by the Home Instead Senior Care network can play an important role at every point on the senior care continuum—from assisting with activities of daily living, to supplementing hospice care. The overall goal of introducing non-medical in-home care throughout the continuum is to increase positive outcomes for seniors and their families while helping to reduce the overall cost of care.
A recent study conducted by Home Instead, Inc. found many benefits of non-medical in-home care services, including:
- Increased amount of care,
- Fewer visits to the doctor,
- Improved quality of life for both seniors and their family caregivers,
- Positive economic impact, including reduced medical care costs,
- Shortened hospital stays, and
- Reduced hospital admissions.
Extending Care Along the Continuum
While non-medical in-home care services are most often thought of as a precursor to more advanced care, they can actually be a cost-effective supplement to advanced care services, including hospice care. The Home Instead Senior Care network recently introduced a new hospice and palliative care training program for its CAREGiversSM to serve seniors at the end of the senior care continuum. The training program equips CAREGivers to support the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the senior and family while working alongside other members of the senior’s end-of-life care team.
Bringing In-Home Care Solutions to Your Patients
Consider how non-medical in-home services can enhance your patients’ care. Whether they are independent at home, receiving hospice care services, or have any range of needs in between, non-medical in-home care services could improve their overall quality of care. Contact your local Home Instead Senior Care office to learn more about services offered in your area.
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