Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, more people have been hesitant to visit their doctors to receive medical treatment and services. However, these fears can cause conditions to worsen and eventually lead to emergencies. To avoid this, someone suffering from an illness or injury can get the medical treatment they need from the comfort of their home through home health care, also known as home care. For those who are afraid or reluctant to visit the hospital but have medical needs, home health care is a more affordable and convenient alternative to hospital care but is just as effective.
Types of Home Health Care Services
Before you choose to use home health care services, however, it’s important to discuss your care plan with your doctor to determine what services you might need at home. Home health care services can range from monitoring one’s health to wound care and even therapy, which you would usually need to visit a hospital or a clinic for. Fortunately, you can keep yourself safe during the pandemic and receive effective health care at home with these services.
Physical, Occupational, and Speech Therapy
Whether it’s due to an injury, illness, or age, patients may need help relearning basic motor skills, improving speech caused by cognitive deficiencies, and doing other activities that can help them perform daily tasks with ease and improve their quality of life. In cases like these, patients can receive at-home treatment from a therapist, depending on their needs. Physical therapists can help patients improve endurance, provide rehabilitation after surgery, increase mobility, and regain use of muscles and joints essential for different tasks and activities.
On the other hand, occupational therapists can assist patients who suffer from physical, social, emotional, and even developmental abilities by helping them restore their independence at home by improving their ability to do simple tasks, such as bathing, dressing, and eating. Occupational therapists can also provide suggestions as to what adaptive equipment patients can use to improve their quality of life.
Lastly, speech therapists can help patients who suffer from impaired speech to regain their ability to speak and communicate clearly and effectively.
Some patients may not have family members or guardians to watch over and take care of them. However, they still need help with in-home services. Companions can offer comfort and supervision to patients, and some may even perform basic household tasks, such as providing meals and housekeeping.
In most cases, doctors may stay in touch with patients through telemedicine, providing consultations and diagnoses when needed. However, in case of an emergency or if the patient is unable to communicate through these channels, a doctor can visit a patient’s home to check on their condition and see if their health care plan needs any changes.
Nursing care is one of the most common forms of home health care provided by registered nurses and nursing assistants. These services can vary depending on a patient’s needs. Nurses will often work together with doctors to set up a health care plan for a patient and even implement these plans. Nursing care services often include monitoring a patient’s health, administering medicine, dressing wounds, and performing IV infusion therapy, among other health support services.
Depending on a patient’s condition, they may need to take note of dietary restrictions to keep them healthy. A dietitian may visit your home or have you schedule a telemedicine appointment to talk about the patient’s diet and condition. Afterward, this specialist will come up with a dietary plan for the patient to follow.
Most medicine and some medical equipment can be delivered to your home for patients to use. This includes any training a patient may need when using certain kinds of equipment or take medication.
Most people think that laboratory and imaging tests need to be performed at the hospital, but this isn’t necessarily true. Some tests like those for blood and urine can take place in the comfort of patients’ homes. In addition to this, some imaging equipment, such as x-ray machines, are portable and can be brought into a patient’s home for lab technicians to perform tests.
Remember that you may still need to visit the doctor in case of an emergency or if you need treatment that can’t be done at home. Don’t let this worry you because medical professionals are working tirelessly to make hospitals a safe place for medical staff and patients alike. Also, if you’re suffering from a disability or condition and find yourself needing home health care, schedule an appointment with your doctor who can help you create an effective home health care plan.