No one wants to spend any more time than needed in the hospital. The aim is to get the necessary treatment or procedure over with as quickly as possible and move on to recovering. Unsurprisingly, the growing trend in hospital care at home is one being met with open arms. Imagine being able to avoid:
- Isolation and loneliness from short visiting hour periods
- The risk of infection inherent in a hospitalization
- The need to share a room with somebody else who is ill
- Institutional food
- The bright lights, alarms, and bells that make sleeping difficult
Hospital level care in the home allows someone whose condition is serious yet stable to receive visits from clinicians and any necessary medical equipment—so treatment is provided in the most comfortable and least restrictive environment.
There is nothing not to love about such a program, right?
The Downside to Receiving Hospital Care at Home
While the benefits of in-home hospital care are incredible, there’s one main factor to take into consideration: are you ready and equipped to serve as the caregiver for a family member who is critically ill? While physicians and nurses visit the home and are available by telehealth sessions for questions, the majority of care falls on the family.
“In the hospital, if something happens, they know how to take care of it,” explains Clare Semling, whose husband participated in a hospital-at-home program. “Now it’s on you.”
It’s important for family members to participate in the decision-making process about a loved one receiving hospital care in the home, and also to be made aware of the implications it will mean in their own lives. For instance, you’ll need to think through:
- What will you do in the event of an emergency?
- Can you handle getting up as required during the night to check on the person, help them to the bathroom, etc.?
- Are you ok with having clinical staff coming in and out of the home at regular intervals?
- Will you be able to manage medications and ensure they’re taken as directed?
Also, think about your current commitments and responsibilities: caring for children, taking care of household chores and errands, working outside of the home, and other important activities such as spending time with your spouse, nurturing relationships with friends and other friends, participating in hobbies and pastimes you enjoy, engaging in healthy lifestyle choices, etc.
It can be helpful to create a quick estimate of how much time you currently have available to care for a family member at home, considering all of the factors above. If it feels unmanageable or overwhelming, seek out help.
Responsive Home Care is here to help if a loved one chooses to receive hospital-at-home care. We can provide medication reminders, run errands, prepare meals, and take the night shift if you would like, enabling you to maintain the healthy life balance you need. Contact us at 954-486-6440 for more information on how we can help with personalized in-home care services in Fort Lauderdale, Lighthouse Point, Hollywood, and the surrounding communities.