Senior patients who require or prefer to receive medical assistance in the comfort of their own home may benefit from in-home nursing. Via in-home nursing providers, registered nurses (RNs) or licensed practical nurses (LPNs) are available to assist homebound individuals with a wide variety of medical conditions and personal needs. By understanding what this type of nursing covers, the benefits, and how to select a reputable provider, patients and loved ones can be better equipped for the search of a skilled in-home nurse.
Medical Conditions Addressed By In-Home Nursing
One of the most common reasons a patient desires this personalized, home based care is the presence of an ongoing or significant medical condition that requires regular monitoring and maintenance. Some of the diagnoses most common to patients who utilize this type of nursing include:
- Chronic illnesses
- Cognitive impairment
- Respiratory illness
- Wound care
Medical Services In-Home Nursing Can Provide
While certain medical conditions may come with a specific list of treatment-related tasks, some patients may require more general services such as the administration of medications and ongoing monitoring of vitals. Examples of some of these services are:
Administration of medications
Care plans can frequently change depending on a patient’s needs. This can translate to a modification in medication or a change in dosage. A skilled nurse can help patients transition to a new medication schedule and help administer that medication if needed.
Some health conditions such as diabetes can require frequent injections. The location of the injection site can vary, making it difficult for some patients to successfully administer them on their own. Skilled nursing providers can assist with these injections to make sure they are administered properly.
Especially when beginning a new treatment or changing medications, physicians will request that a patient’s vitals be regularly monitored. The nurse will be able to help with that order by monitoring the patient’s blood pressure, intake and output, pulse, respiration, oxygen levels and temperature.
Other Services Commonly Offered By In-Home Nursing
As people age, it is not uncommon for them to struggle with once seemingly easy daily tasks. Though these tasks are considered to be more self-care related than specialized medical assistance, many nursing companies still offer these services to patients in an effort to serve the whole individual, including their medical and personal well-being.
The most common daily tasks in-home nursing providers typically help with include:
Limitations of movement due to age, injury, or surgery can even make getting dressed for the day a challenge in itself. A nurse can help a patient get dressed and ready to face the day.
Some patients may need assistance in getting adequate nourishment due to injuries and surgery recovery. In this case the nurse can help with feeding clients to ensure they are getting nourishment.
Daily personal hygiene activities such as brushing hair, brushing teeth, shaving, bathing, and using the restroom can become increasingly difficult for some seniors. Nursing providers should be able to help patients cope with these activities.
Often after a severe injury or surgery, a patient will be required to change wound dressings frequently to help stave off infection. This can be difficult for some patients to manage on their own due to a limited range of motion, making the help of a nurse essential.
4 Benefits of Using In-Home Nursing
Choosing to receive nursing care in the home can be a big step for some individuals, but knowing the benefits often outweighs any concerns a patient may have. Four benefits of using in-home nursing are:
Maintaining some level of independence
No individual wants to give up their independence. It can be a humbling thing to suddenly require professional assistance to maintain your health. Remaining at home allows most patients to feel a certain level of independence and control over the situation.
Coordinating transportation to a doctor’s office and spending time in a waiting room just to have a few tests done can be in an inconvenience, not to mention uncomfortable. By staying in their own homes, patients can avoid transportation headaches and get medical care, all from the comfort of their bed or favorite easy chair.
Limited exposure to individuals who could be sick
When battling a health condition, the last thing any patient needs is additional exposure to germs. By having nurses come to the home, patients can typically limit their exposure to germs as compared to what they might have encountered at the doctor’s office.
Peace of mind for the patient and their loved ones
When a patient is receiving excellent care, both they and their loved ones can breathe a little easier knowing their health is being carefully monitored and taken care of.
As seniors age, they may need to enlist the help of an in-home nurse to skillfully perform basic medical care or aide them with daily health related activities such as hygiene. While these things can be critical to an individual’s health, a reputable nursing provider will realize that a patient’s needs extend well beyond medical services.
Any in-home nursing provider should also strive to act with integrity and compassion as they treat the whole (emotional, psychological, and physical) patient, help them maintain a sense of dignity, and provide them with a better overall quality of life.
If you or someone you love is considering in-home nursing, please reach out to Senior Estate Concierge today.