These days, healthcare is one of the most conversed about and debated issues facing our nation. The growth of the American population, concentrated in the baby boomer generation, currently puts one in ten people over the age of 51 directly responsible for caring for an elder. The total percentage of Americans involved in taking care of an adult family member rests somewhere between 19% and 25%. With a continued growth in population, these numbers are only going to grow. With adults providing primary care to their parents and relatives, the question of quality of care is raised. Do these family members, with no formal medical training, have the necessary skill to ensure the health of their relatives? Regardless of whether or not they do, many families cannot afford private physicians and assisted living care. With that in mind, we would like to suggest five simple ways to improve home care of elders.
1. Keep a Clean House.
Be sure to minimize the amount of superfluous materials floating around your house. Excess clutter can spell disaster for a senior that isn’t aware of its existence. A little bit of extra attentiveness to the organization of your house can go a long way in providing a safe living environment for your family.
2. Make Sure Phones are Easily Accessible.
A large portion of senior tragedy could have been avoided if the ailing senior had the ability to reach out to either an ambulance or the police… or even you. Make sure that phones are both visually and physically accessible .
3. Reach out to your Senior.
If you are like most families, the constant battle for more communication between parent and child has been going on for a long time. Tackle this, and make sure to establish a forum of open communication between you and the person you are caring for. The more you know about what is going on with their day to day routine, the more you can anticipate issues and fix problems that arise. Two heads are better than one.
4. Have an Established Routine:
Building off of communication, be sure to have a working knowledge of their basic schedule and, vice versa, let them know what you’re going to be doing week by week if not day by day. This opens a new forum for discussion, and allows for much simpler scheduling of medical visits, check-ups, etc.
5. Use the Tools Available:
Advances in home medical technology have reached the point where parallel lines are drawn between functionality, affordability, and convienence. Remote monitoring technology allows you to be by their side, even when you physically aren’t.
Medminder provides remote monitoring solutions for prescription medicine regimens. Learn more at www.medminder.com.