Transitional Care with Visiting Angels



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Posted on

Oct 26, 2022


Minnesota - Twin Cities Metro Area

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The risk of many illnesses increases with age, as does the risk of hospitalization for these conditions. The ideal after leaving the hospital is to grow healthier, but readmission to the hospital 30-days after discharge is a significant possibility for many seniors. 

Transitional care with Visiting Angels is one precaution seniors can take while at the hospital to reduce their chances of returning and staying happy and healthy in the comfort of their homes. 

What is Transitional Care? 

Transitional care is when a professional caregiver works with a senior client to return home after a hospitalization safely. The goal of transitional care is to reduce the risk of readmission by helping clients follow discharge and follow-up care instructions. 

It’s important to understand that professional caregivers providing transitional care are not nurses or certified nursing assistants (CNAs). Professional caregivers may work alongside medical professionals but are responsible for helping clients with non-medical tasks. These tasks include light housekeeping, medication reminders, meal preparation, and transportation. Caregivers can also assist with personal tasks like grooming, toileting, showering, and mobility.

Who Benefits from Transitional Care?

Any older adult returning home after hospitalization can benefit from transitional care. It doesn’t matter how minor or severe the hospitalization was; if a senior requests help at home, caregivers at Visiting Angels can help. And even though most clients are considered at low risk after 30-days, clients can continue receiving at-home care for as long as they want and find value in the services. 

Common Causes of Hospital Readmission 

Seniors get readmitted to hospitals for various reasons. A few common risks include failure to comply with discharge orders, infection, and falls.

  • Failure to comply with discharge orders: Spending time in the hospital can feel overwhelming. Sometimes when seniors get discharged, it’s hard for them to comprehend all discharge orders fully. They may forget to take medications, schedule follow-up visits, or limit strenuous activity. Not following discharge directions puts strain on the body and leads to rehospitalization. 
  • Infection: If a senior is in the hospital for surgery, they must keep any incisions or stitches clean and covered to reduce the risk of infection. While caregivers can’t change bandages, they can help seniors shower and remind them to take care of themselves. Caregivers can also observe when a client is not properly caring for a wound and can help contact a doctor or nurse before an infection starts or spreads. 
  • Falls: All seniors risk falling and injuring themselves at home. Sometimes after hospitalization, a client may feel disorientated, further increasing their risk for a fall. With transitional care, a professional caregiver can assist clients around their homes and run errands outside the house so seniors can rest and stay safe. Caregivers can also help identify potential fall risks and suggest solutions. 

Ready-Set-Go Home with Transitional Care with Visiting Angels

If your aging loved one is returning home after an inpatient hospital stay and needs assistance making the transition, the team at Visiting Angels can help. Ready-Set-Go Home is our transitional care program focused on reducing seniors’ risk of readmission through our three-prong approach. We start by visiting your loved one in the hospital to assist with discharge planning. We then help prepare your loved one’s home and assist them with various non-medical tasks to keep them safe and comfortable at home. Lastly, our office works behind the scenes to help coordinate medication, equipment, and food deliveries.

Our St Louis Park office serves those in Minneapolis, St Louis Park, Golden Valley, Richfield, and the West Metro area. If you’d like to learn more about our transitional care services, call us at 952.260.4521 or send us a message online.

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