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  • ELDERCARE AND FAMILY CAREGIVER ISSUES

    Family members who are caring for elderly loved ones face a variety of issues. Here are some of the most important considerations and how we can help address those:

     

    Carefully Matched Caregivers

    We take extra measures to match the most appropriate caregiver to the client, based not only on skill level but personality. Our compassionate caregivers are highly trained professionals who have a comprehensive understanding of community resources. They take time to get to know the person requiring care and all family members who are involved. They establish warm and sensitive working relationships and strive to ensure the same kind of compassionate care and companionship, with utmost dignity, that family members would provide.

    Personal assistance includes:

    • Bathing, dressing and personal care
    • Medication reminders
    • Coordination of care with health services
    • Attention to range-of-motion activities
    • Errands and shopping
    • Meal preparation
    • Transportation to appointments
    • Laundry and light housekeeping

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    Home Safety for the Elderly

    According to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, accidental falls are the leading cause of fatal injuries among Americans aged 65 and older. Our care managers conduct a safety checklist to promote and ensure a safer living environment. Some of our recommendations include keeping indoor and outdoor pathways safe, reviewing our client's medication intake and condition, adding safety features, and reviewing floor and stairway surfaces. Below are a few resources to consider when assessing your home:

    • Fall Prevention Center of Excellence
    • National Council on Aging -- Fall Prevention
    • Fact Sheet on Falls
    • The AGS Foundation for Healthy Living
    • National Center for Injury Prevention and Control

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    Medication Management

    Medication management has become a widespread problem among the elderly, but our nurses are trained to monitor client medication. We work with families to tailor every need and assess a care plan to manage any medication. Our nurses have knowledge in medication interaction and monitor the effectiveness of treatment, report adverse reactions, and instruct patients about their medication. Our nurses communicate with doctors or physicians if special treatment is needed. Something as simple as medication reminders, tracking and compliance, and attentive supervision by a nurse can literally extend a person's life.

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    Nutrition and Healthy Aging

    How Many Calories Do Seniors Need?

    • A woman over 50 needs from about 1600 to 2000 calories a day, depending on whether she is physically inactive to very active.
    • A man over 50 needs from about 2000 to 2800 calories a day, depending on whether he is physically inactive to very active.
    • In addition to calories, it is important to stay hydrated by drinking water all day long.

    Eat Nutrient-Rich Foods

    • Fruit - Focus on whole fruits rather than juices, about 1.5 to 2 servings/day.
    • Veggies - Think color. Choose dark leafy greens as well as orange and yellow vegetables, 2 to 2.5 cups/day.
    • Calcium - 1,200 mg/day through servings of dairy, tofu, broccoli, almonds, kale.
    • Grains - Choose whole grains for more nutrients and higher fiber, 6-7 oz./day.
    • Protein - .5 grams per pound of bodyweight. Lean meats, fish, beans, peas, nuts eggs, milk, cheese, and seeds.
    • Supplements - Ask your doctor about Vitamin B-12, Vitamin D, or a multivitamin.

    Chewing or Upset Stomach Problems?

    • Choose soft canned fruits, and creamed, mashed and cooked vegetables.
    • For protein, use ground meat, eggs, milk, soft cheeses, yogurt, cream soups.
    • If milk upsets the stomach, try yogurt, puddings and cheeses.
    • If cabbage and broccoli are a problem, there are many other vegetables to choose.

    Shopping or Cooking Problems?

    • Request local food store deliveries, and investigate local volunteer programs.
    • There are many frozen and prepared foods that simply need to be microwaved.
    • Senior citizen programs offer cooked meals, either at their location or home delivered.
    • Use our home care agency to provide shopping and cooking assistance.

    Appetite Problems?

    • Eat with family and friends, and take part in group meal programs at senior centers.
    • Find out if your meds are causing appetite or taste problems - if so, if they can be changed.

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    Wound Care - Pressure Ulcers

    Stage I Pressure Ulcer

    • Intact skin with non-blanchable redness of a localized area
    • Darkly pigmented skin may differ from the surrounding area - may be difficult to detect
    • The area may be painful, firm, soft, warmer or cooler compared to adjacent tissue

    Stage II Pressure Ulcer

    • Partial thickness loss of dermis appearing as a shallow open ulcer with a red pink wound bed, without slough
    • May also appear as an intact or open/ruptured serum-filled blister
    • May appear as a shiny or dry shallow ulcer without slough or bruising

    Stage III Pressure Ulcer

    • Full thickness tissue loss
    • Subcutaneous fat may be visible but bone, tendon or muscle are not exposed
    • Slough may be present but does not obscure the depth of tissue loss
    • May include undermining and tunneling

    Stage IV Pressure Ulcer

    • Full thickness tissue loss with exposed bone, tendon or muscle
    • Slough or eschar may be present on some parts of the wound bed
    • Often includes undermining and tunneling

    Deep Tissue Injury

    • Purple or maroon localized area of discolored intact skin or blood-filled blister
    • Tissue may be painful, firm, mushy, boggy, warmer or cooler compared to adjacent tissue

    Pressure Ulcer Care

    • Assessment/documentation of condition
    • Physician/Nurse Practitioner notification
    • Medication regimen
    • Nutrition regimen
    • Referrals to related specialists
    • Interventions for pressure reduction/relief
    • Topical treatment plan
    • Documentation of healing progress
    • Patient/Family/Staff education

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    Senior Companionship

    What Is a Senior Companion?

    A senior companion is someone who will keep you company, help you live an independent lifestyle, and become a friend. Our primary goal is to help individuals maintain a safe and familiar lifestyle in the comfort of their own home. Our companions are always looking for new ways to assist seniors, including going for walks, participating in hobbies, playing board games, help with gardening, or sharing stories. Through our skilled and compassionate staff, we provide quality services and carefully matched companions. We match clients with companions that share the same interest - music, politics, traveling, cultural background, etc.

    Caregivers, who differ from companions, provide non-medical, personal services to clients. These services include assistance with bathing, grooming, housekeeping, meal preparation, transportation, laundry, and respite care. We promote the independence and dignity of our clients. Let us provide you with personalized services and a schedule tailored to fit your needs.

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We accept patients for care regardless of age, race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability, being a qualified disabled veteran, being a qualified disabled veteran of the Vietnam era,
or any other category protected by law, or decisions regarding advance directives.