September 11, 2017

senior healthcareIn an idealistic world, healthcare would revolve around you and your own preferences, sticking to your particular needs and wishes – fitting into your plan and routine, unhindered by problems like an unwavering healthcare professional who sees healthcare solutions in black and white. The truth is far from perfect though, and most of us have a tendency to submit to doctors’ orders without a reflection that there might be a better-suited option for senior healthcare.

With a bit of understanding, however, patients can, in fact, take a more proactive stance for their healthcare. Recognized as “person-centered care,” it calls for physicians working together with patients and any other members of the family or care providers they choose, taking into consideration the patient’s preferences, values and goals, and working with that information as a guide throughout all facets of care.

There are many steps we can all take in order to reach a more individualized degree of care:

  • Think about your healthcare goals, and write this information down to discuss with your medical practitioners. And, request that medical personnel integrate these goals into your medical records.
  • Become well-educated in your own health issues and needs, and how they’re having an effect on your day-to-day life. As an example, are you suffering from complications with any sort of routine activities of daily living, like taking showers or dressing? Are you struggling with specific types of movements, like lifting or bending? A great assessment tool is available here.
  • Be sure that conversations with physicians are two-sided. Fully take part in a conversation to make sure your worries are addressed and that you are aware of any possible complications or other risks of treatment recommendations.
  • Should you have multiple doctors (for instance, a primary care physician plus one or more specialists in different practices), confirm that communication is taking place among all. This could necessitate requesting that documentation be shared between providers, and then following up to verify that’s been done.

Include a trusted member of the family, friend, or professional in-home caregiver, such as Continuum provides, in all healthcare appointments. Having another individual available to write down notes, answers to questions, and other helpful information helps ensure that nothing falls through the cracks.

For further recommendations and for a partner in care to help make certain older adults and their loved ones have a voice in their care needs, contact Continuum. Our St. Louis area home care assistance can provide accompanied transportation to procedures and appointments, pick up prescription medications and run other errands, cook healthy and balanced meals, and so much more. Call us at (314) 863-9912 or contact us online.