Transitioning Seniors Home After the Hospital

March 24, 2016

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Being discharged from the hospital can be a welcome relief. But knowing that as many as 1 in 8 patients are readmitted to the hospital within 30 days of their homecoming, and that those remittances total $97 billion in healthcare costs annually, can leave seniors and their loved ones anxious about the road ahead.

Granny NANNIES was founded in 1990 to address the issue of care at home – creating a solution for those who want to be an active part of the care and wellbeing of an aging or recovering loved one but are too far away or have limited resources. The home health care agency believes the answer lies in having help. We know it takes a village to raise a child, but why should aging seniors be any different?

The Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) and Home Health Aides (HHAs) at Granny NANNIES are specialists in hospital-to-home and recovery care. What would normally land seniors back in the hospital – lack of proper nutrition, irregular medication usage, dehydration or falls – can be avoided with quality, highly trained, supervisory CNAs and HHAs.

Employing a CNA or HHA to help with in-home care after a hospital visit is one of the best choices you or your loved one can make when transitioning home after a hospital stay, surgery or other medical procedure. The CNA or HHA can help reduce hospital readmission rates by performing the following duties:

Reviewing Discharge and Medical Instructions

A study in the Journal of General Internal Medicine found that 81% of seniors didn’t understand discharge instructions. While hospitals have made great strides to discuss discharge orders and better communicate important details, seniors may still never pick up the prescriptions, schedule the follow up appointment or ask the questions on their mind.

A CNA or HHA can walk you or your loved one through this process, from meeting directly with the hospital representative to reviewing the paperwork at a later date. They can best understand the next course of action and any important details that pertain to providing care and maintaining health at home. Caregivers can also monitor the medication schedules, dosage and frequency of medications to ensure they’re being taken as prescribed.

When exercise is part of the home health care regimen, the CNAs and HHAs at Granny NANNIES offer ambulation assistance to prevent falls and injuries, as well as range of motion exercises to increase endurance and mobility.

Getting Home Safely

According to AAA, two-thirds of senior drivers take five or more daily medications that can affect their ability to drive safely. That number likely increases after a hospital visit. The CNA or HHA matched with you or your loved one can be there for the return trip home. They provide reliable transportation services for homebound seniors and are available for follow up appointments, errands and more once seniors are at home.

Looking Out for Symptoms

Many symptoms and warning signs of complications can go unnoticed or their importance can be misjudged. CNAs and HHAs are attentive and ready if those signs and symptoms require immediate medical attention or are side effects of a newly prescribed medicine, for example. Knowing that a trained eye has their wellbeing at heart, they provide peace of mind and ease stress for patients and their families.

Staying Fed and Nourished

Poor nutrition and malnutrition occur most often among the elderly population. Due to lack of transportation, physical limitations or scarce financial resources, seniors are often not ingesting the nutrients they need for a balanced diet. Inadequate nutritional intake can make seniors less capable of fighting off infections and other diseases.

CNAs and HHAs can encourage the consumption of fluids and prepare nutritious meals. This eliminates the risk of seniors in the kitchen, issues related to grocery shopping and under-eating. Caregivers are also trained to address dietary concerns, including diabetes, food allergies and chewing ability, as well as cooking style and dietary preferences.

Taking care of yourself or a loved one who has been sent home from the hospital can be a full time job, but it doesn’t have to be yours. Granny NANNIES wants you and your loved one to find solace in having a trained caregiver available during the recovery process. We will conduct a personality screening that will match you and your loved one’s personal qualifications with a caregiver who has a compatible skillset and schedule. Our CNAs and HHAs are screened to ensure they’re licensed, but they must also pass a national criminal background check, have positive references and be in good physical condition to provide the assistance you or your loved one require. It is also essential that they have the kindness and compassion needed to treat you or your loved one courteously and properly.

Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, you and your loved one can trust the CNAs and HHAs at Granny NANNIES. To enlist the services of Granny NANNIES, call 800-316-2669.