Aging is a fundamental part of life. As one grows old their care needs increase. In India, most of the elderly care or senior care is provided by the family members. But this care needs structure and professional touch. Elderly care needs a more collaborative approach. It requires doctors, healthcare teams, family, community, etc. to come together as a cohesive unit and maintain the quality of life of the elderly.
So, what can be termed as a good elderly care? Here are 6 components that Ubiqare Health believes make up for a good senior care service.
A lot of care plans focus entirely on the medical needs of the person. They treat the elderly as a “patient” rather than a person. This makes the whole plan patient-centric or illness specific. But a senior person needs more than just medical support.
Hence, we create a care plan that puts the elderly at the center and meets their special needs. We let them retain the control of their life and provide assistance.
Senior people are often encumbered with health issues. Existence of other co-morbidities and loss of stamina with age can complicate things further. They need to have their vital signs regularly monitored to identify any distress.
As part of our senior care plan we ensure that the person’s blood pressure, pulse, respiration, and temperature are checked and recorded regularly. If the person is suffering from any debilitating illness, then additional factors like pain or other symptoms are also be measured using the NRS or VAS scale.
A medical professional reviews these recordings daily as part of the care protocol and identify any early signs of distress or deterioration in health. A doctor-driven senior care ensures daily oversight of the vital signs by a doctor to take proactive measures.
In the traditional method of elderly care, doctor availability is often missing. The family must either take the patient to the nearby clinic or look for a doctor who can visit them at home in case of medical needs. This can result in loss of valuable time and cause great inconvenience.
In our collaborative approach, we assign a Care Doctor to each elderly person. This doctor is available online and offline in case of emergencies. The doctor oversees the care protocol of the elderly person. If the person has undergone specialist treatment for any illness, then the Care Doctor collaborates with the specialist and extends their follow up care at home for the person.
When it comes to interventions, there is a wide spectrum to look at. Elderly people often need their medicines to be titrated based on changes in their overall health. They may need lab services to get tests done. If they are suffering from chronic illnesses, then there would be symptoms which need clinical intervention to provide relief. Traveling to a hospital or a diagnostic center for these things can be exhausting for the elderly.
So, instead of making the senior person visit these different places we bring these services to the person’s home. We make our trained staff available in person for clinical interventions for symptom relief. Our doctors monitor the drug dosages and triage them based on the needs. We arrange for collection of lab samples from the person’s home. In case of limited physical mobility, we also provide assistants to help with nursing needs.
The focus of our care plan is to make everything as comfortable as possible for the senior person. We ensure that quality medical attention and assistance is easily accessible for such people.
An elderly person has a unique set of requirements depending on his/her health. In addition to doctor consultations and medicine administration, he/she may also need medical supplies like adult diapers. They may need equipment like a wheelchair or oxygen concentrator at home. In emergencies they may need ambulance to rush them to nearest hospital. Coordinating all these services on a regular basis can be challenging for the family.
A good elderly care service provider, that Ubiqare Health is, coordinates these different services needed by the elderly. Our senior care plans usually involve a Care Manager that is assigned to the person’s family. This Care Manager coordinates the services needed by the senior over the duration of the care period.
With age, a person’s metabolism changes and so does their ability to consume food. If they are battling illnesses like cancer, then nausea and loss of appetite would persist as side effects. This can cause deficiency of essential nutrition that can further complicate matters.
A senior care service should have a nutritionist on board. This nutritionist can help the family understand the real nutritional requirements of the senior person. They can help the family create an ideal food plan that would meet the nutritional requirements of the elderly and remain easy on their metabolism.
What elderly often seek is dignity in aging and quality of life – for themselves and their family caregivers. A senior care program focuses on the elderly and the caregiver. While on one hand it meets the requirements of the elderly person, on the other it reduces the burden on caregiving on the family. Only then we believe it has met its purpose.