Innovative Approaches to Managing COPD in Elderly Care Settings
Elders with COPD need the utmost care and attention. This condition requires treatment, medications, and therapies. While these are important for a senior COPD patient, some family members are not able to provide them due to different reasons. This is when an elderly care provider will be most helpful. COPD is not a joke. But if our seniors can get what they need to manage their condition, then their quality of life will still be at its best.
What is COPD?
COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, refers to conditions that could block airflow and produce breathing-related problems. Emphysema and chronic bronchitis are included in the conditions of this disease.
Approximately 150,000 Americans die of this disease annually. The main cause of COPD is smoking. Nonsmokers, on the other hand, can contract this disease through a variety of means, including second-hand smoke, chemical exposure, and others.
There are lots of COPD cases that were not diagnosed. This means that the patients were not able to get the right treatment and care. But for senior COPD patients who are in care settings, treatment, medications, and proper care are given. This is how important it is for elderly people to find the right healthcare services that will help them manage and get through the disease.
Elderly care services do not only care for COPD senior patients. These facilities can also care for elders with Alzheimer’s disease and other age-related conditions. Keep in mind that the number of individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease can increase to 13.8 million by 2060. With expert elderly care services, these elders will have professionals to help them manage their health conditions with proper care and treatment.
What is Elderly Care?
Senior adults' needs and requirements are met via elder care. They care for elders with different health conditions and make sure that they give the patients a better quality of life. Seniors can choose from various types of elderly care that are tailored to their condition, location, and lifestyle. The different types of elderly care are:
Nursing or care homes
A nursing home is a facility for people who do not require hospitalization but cannot be cared for at home. Nursing aids and professional nurses are usually available 24 hours a day in most nursing facilities. Several nursing homes are structured similarly to hospitals. Medical treatment is provided, as well as physical, speech, and occupational therapy.
In-home care encompasses any professional support services that allow a person to live comfortably in their home. These services can support someone who is aging and requires assistance to live independently, someone who is managing chronic health difficulties, someone who is recovering from a medical setback, or someone who has special needs or a disability.
Palliative care is specialized medical care for people with life-threatening illnesses like cancer or heart failure. Individuals in palliative care may get medical care for their symptoms as well as treatment to cure their terrible disease.
Assisted living facilities are intended for older individuals who are no longer able to live independently and require assistance with everyday chores such as bathing or dressing but do not require the 24-hourhealth care that a nursing home provides.
Importance of Elderly Care for COPD Patients
Caring for elderly COPD patients is not easy. There are a lot of things that these patients need when it comes to care and treatment. With professional elderly care, COPD patients can have:
● Assisted routines on medications and therapies
● Encouragement on the lifestyle changes that the patients need to do
● Expert prescription of medical treatments, medications, and supplies
● Provide needed rehabilitation for the patients
● Round-the-clock monitoring of patient’s condition
Innovative Approaches to COPD Management in Elderly Care Settings
Elderly care settings need to upgrade their approaches to managing COPD patients. This is to keep up with the ever-improving demands of patients and their conditions. Innovation is also needed to make sure that their care services are appropriate for their patients. To manage COPD in elderly patients, these innovative approaches are applied:
Telehealth and Remote Monitoring
To keep up with the development of technology, elderly care services now also have telehealth and remote monitoring. This is the application of specialized technology to improve contact between physicians and patients at home. This approach offers benefits such as:
● Advantageous for patients in rural areas
● Reduced risk of exposure to other illnesses and viruses
● Reduced hospitalizations
● Fewer transportation expenses
Personalized Care Plans
Patients and healthcare practitioners collaborate on the management of health issues through talks in which management goals are established and an action plan to attain these goals is developed. The benefits of this approach are:
● Patients are given the choice of the care and treatment they want.
● Patients can choose the health professionals they trust.
● Patients can be assisted in managing their health and well-being.
Collaborative Care Teams
Collaborative care necessitates the collaboration of a group of specialists with complementary talents who work together to care for a population of patients suffering from common mental illnesses such as depression or anxiety. The benefits of this approach are:
● Better communication among health professionals
● More comprehensive patient care
● Team efforts are exerted to provide patientcare
Elderly care services can offer lifestyle change plans to their COPD patients. Elders with COPD need to change habits that have contributed to their condition. Through this approach, the elderly care professional can prevent the patient's condition from worsening. The different lifestyle changes that can be administered to COPD patients are:
● Quit smoking
● Having a more appropriate environment
● Maintaining a healthy weight
Challenges in Implementing Innovative Approaches to COPD Management in Care Settings
Innovative approaches to managing COPD patients can pose different challenges for elderly care services. These challenges may affect the efficiency of their services to COPD patients.
However, identifying these challenges can help care professionals find solutions. This will lead to better services and management of COPD patients under their care. Some of the common challenges when implementing innovative approaches in care settings are:
Lack of manpower
There are care facilities and services that do not have enough people to handle all the patients they have. As a result, healthcare workers are overburdened. Exhaustion and burnout could happen to the professionals, and the services given to the patients may not be at their best.
Lack of funds for changes
Innovative approaches need changes in the facilities. If the care services do not have enough funds, then the new approaches will not be implemented.
Lack of knowledge of the innovative approaches
Care professionals need to upgrade their skills and knowledge inpatient care. Without updating their skills and knowledge, innovativeapproaches will not be implemented properly.
Patients not ready for new approaches
Patients are elders who are not knowledgeable about the new technologies that are used in patient care these days. This becomes a challengeas some patients may not be as cooperative when it comes to new methods. Some are even reluctant to give it a try.
How to Give Care to a COPD Patient
Aside from getting elderly care services, you can also help take care of your elderly family member with COPD by following these tips:
● Help them quit smoking
● Make them stay active through exercise
● Make their home COPD-friendly
● Keep them updated with their doctor’s appointments
● Be their companion, especially during times of distress
Senior COPD patients can find the right people to care for them and help them manage their condition by using elderly care services and facilities. Through the innovative approaches that these professionals provide to their patients, they can help them live a better quality of life.
At CARE Inc, we make sure our caregivers are up to date on all the latest care approaches for their elderly clients. To begin creating your personal plan of care, contact us today to speak with one of our representatives.
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