After being discharged, many seniors return to the hospital within 30 days to receive further treatment for acute medical issues. In some instances, they experience longer hospital stays and more severe complications once readmitted. Here are some of the most common reasons seniors are readmitted to the hospital within 30 days and how to prevent each issue.
Uninsured Medical Needs
Medical equipment, home care, rehab therapies, and other recovery necessities can be costly, and some expenses may not be covered under certain insurance plans. Failing to keep up with treatment and not getting the necessary assistance could be the reasons your elderly loved one is readmitted to the hospital. Contact your loved one’s insurance provider prior to discharge and discover what his or her current plan covers. If one of the medical needs isn’t covered, look for ways to pay for these services or devices, such as:
• Upgrading the plan
• Asking family and friends to help out with the medical expenses
• Researching local and federal programs that offer financial support to the elderly
Seniors treated for pneumonia, especially those with multiple comorbidities, are at a higher risk of being readmitted to the hospital within 30 days. In most cases, it’s the impact of another health condition, such as heart disease, that causes the readmission. Adherence to discharge plans is one of the best ways to prevent readmissions due to infections. Antibiotics are needed to treat pneumonia, and if your loved one skips a dosage or accidentally doubles up, he or she could need further treatment. To help your loved one manage his or medicines, consider using medication apps, prescription holders, alert devices, or home care.
A professional caregiver can closely monitor your loved one for post-hospitalization complications. When searching for reliable homecare agencies, families want to know their senior loved one will be well taken care of. At Home Care Assistance, our expertly trained caregivers are available around the clock to assist with tasks around the house, provide transportation to medical appointments and social events, and much more.
Traumatic injuries are a common cause of hospitalization among the elderly, and once discharged, the odds of a subsequent fall increase significantly. The long-term effects of the original fall or traumatic injury often occur after a senior is released. Falls are also the leading cause of death among older adults. Some ways to lower your loved one’s risk of falling include:
• Scheduling physical therapy sessions
• Cooking foods that boost bone health
• Removing clutter within the home, especially the walkways
• Widening doorways
• Replacing traditional rugs with nonskid mats
• Installing grab bars in the bathroom
• Adding adequate lighting throughout the home
Many aging adults need assistance when they return home after being hospitalized. Some seniors only require help with a few daily tasks so they can maintain their independence. However, those living with serious illnesses may need more extensive assistance. Luckily, there is professional live-in care Waterloo, ON, seniors can rely on. Home can be a safer and more comfortable place for your loved one to live with the help of an expertly trained and dedicated live-in caregiver.
Lack of Follow-Up Care
Medical societies recommend follow-up visits for seniors, typically within the first few days of being discharged. During these visits, blood work may be done, imaging tests can be performed, and doctors can ask specific questions about your loved one’s health. Many side effects can be caught and treated when you take your loved one to the doctor, and the readmission risk may decrease. Discuss transportation options with your loved one, making sure he or she gets to these follow-up appointments as needed.
A professional caregiver can be a wonderful source of support for a senior who’s recovering after being hospitalized. Waterloo elderly home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently. Trust your loved one’s care to the professionals at Home Care Assistance. Call us today at (519) 954-2111 to learn about our high-quality in-home care services.