Categories: falls prevention, independence at home, caregiving
For seniors, falls can have serious health and lifestyle consequences. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC):
- One in three adults age 65 and older falls each year; this increases to one in two for those 80 and over
- The cost of fall-related injuries is projected to reach nearly $55 billion by 2020—CDC’s National Center for Injury and Prevention Control
- The majority of falls take place in the home
“Falls Prevention Week” begins on September 22. To help seniors and their caregivers reduce the risk of falls, we’ve put together these tips on preventing fall injuries. Taking these simple precautions in the home all year round can help you or your loved one live a healthier, more independent life.
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Categories: chronic care, independence at home, primary care, caregiving
One of the most important relationship decisions you’ll ever make is selecting your primary care physician (PCP). Ideally, you’ll be involved with your PCP for a long time, so it’s important to find one who you trust.
PCPs are your home base for health care. You’ll see them for most of your non-emergency needs including preventive care, routine check-ups, and most illnesses. If you need a specialist for a condition or illness, PCPs will refer you to someone appropriate.
As important as they are, choosing a PCP takes a little bit of research. The first step is asking around. Ask your friends, neighbors and relatives who they see and if they are happy with their provider. You can also check with your insurance provider for directories that can help you make the right choice.
Once you’ve narrowed it down, schedule a preliminary meeting with your top choices to get a feel for care style. The Mayo Clinic recommends you choose a provider who:
- Makes you feel comfortable discussing health topics
- Answers your questions
- Communicates well, speaking in terms you can understand
- Doesn’t make you feel rushed
- Suggests ways to improve your health
- Recommends screenings and exams appropriate for your age and sex
- Treats common illnesses and injuries
- Involves you as a partner in your care—asks what you think, listens to your concerns and expects you to follow through with action when required
- Explains the options when you need treatment
- Offers referrals to highly qualified specialists when necessary
- Has a convenient location from your work or home
- Offers convenient hours and appointments without long waits
The information on this page is provided for informational purposes only; Amedisys does not endorse any particular provider. Please carefully evaluate whether any provider or supplier is able to meet your needs.
Categories: healthcare reform, home health, independence at home, chronic care
In his New York Times opinion article, Bring Health Care Home, Dr. Jack Resnick makes a compelling case for bringing health care home, where a network of coordinated care givers serve patients in a familiar, comfortable setting.
Care of chronic conditions is more often effectively managed in the home setting rather than in a hospital. The coordinated home health care models of today, which feature a broad network of highly-skilled clinicians ranging from physical therapists to physicians, work with the latest communication technologies to offer the best of old and new forms of medical treatment.
A home based primary care program introduced by the Veteran’s Administration more than 30 years ago has reduced hospital stays by 62 percent and led to a 24 percent drop in overall medical costs. The home health care industry can help produce better patient outcomes if more people, especially doctors, are more informed about health care at home options.
About the Author
Michael Fleming, MD, FAAFP is the Chief Medical Officer for Amedisys, and Past President of the American Academy of Family Physicians and the Louisiana Academy of Family Physicians. Dr. Fleming has served as Speaker of the Congress of Delegates of the AAFP and as Board Chair of the AAFP Board of Directors. He serves as an assistant clinical professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the LSU Health Science Center and in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at Tulane University Medical School.