Home Health Essay

Needs to be based on medical devices (and directly-related services) [Sai] The health care industry is feeling the impact of baby boomers’ active lifestyles and their use of innovative medical devices. The baby boomer generation has started to enter retirement age. Being the largest generation in the nation, the number of people requiring healthcare services as they age is set to increase rapidly over the next 10 years. Many sectors of the healthcare industry are struggling to recruit enough qualified staff to meet the demands of the baby boomer generation, specifically the home health field. Researchers at Northwestern University revealed many home health agencies are unable to find employees with strong backgrounds, education or training in the healthcare field, and are forced to hire less-qualified applicants to meet growing demands. Elderly Americans and aging baby boomers suffering from physical and mental ailments are then paired with unskilled workers, placing both participants in an unsafe situation. According to the study, there are many good home health agencies that comb through job applicants until certain criteria are met. But there are also weaker home health agencies that struggle to fill vacant positions and serve a growing list of customers. When a caregiver has no formal training in home healthcare, a patient is at risk of having their medication mixed up, health issues to develop or inappropriate treatment implemented. The lack of qualified home health employees is often the result of a small population of employees to hire from, rising demand from an aging population and insufficient recruitment tactics by agencies. The study revealed 55 percent of home health agencies conducted a federal background check on job applicants before hiring them, and just one-third reported drug testing employees to ensure patient safety. A mere third of home health agencies required applicants to complete a skills competency test to assess training and knowledge of the industry, while 58.5 percent of agencies use self-reports allowing applicants to describe their skills rather than demonstrate them.

The U.S. Department of Labor anticipates 78 million baby boomers born between 1946 and 1964 will have a significant impact on healthcare demands in the upcoming years. To avoid costly nursing home expenses, many will likely opt for home healthcare, creating more than 1 million new home healthcare
positions over the next 10 years. It will be a challenge for the industry to fill these vacancies that offers modest wages and no employer-sponsored benefits, the Associated Press reported. The federal government is encouraging home healthcare agencies to find ways to improve compensation and benefits for home healthcare workers to spur interest and boost the quality of care for patients. Today’s “middle income” baby boomers, or those falling into the income bracket between $25,000 and $75,000 annually, say their preference for receiving care in retirement is to receive care in their homes. They’ve also redefined their retirement expectations, according to a report from the Center for a Secure Retirement. More than half of these upcoming retirees believe their retirement care will not be the same as it was for previous generations, Largely, this population, defined by the study as Americans ages 49 to 67, in the middle income bracket, believes it will be more active and more satisfied in retirement, but that it will not be able to rely on care from family members or insurance provided by former employees.

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Further, a majority—at 84%—say they wish to age in their homes, while 30% say they prefer an independent living community as a place to receive care in retirement. And of those surveyed, only 8% have a detailed plan for retirement, versus 72% who have no plan and one in five who have a “rough plan.” The survey was conducted in April 2013 by the Bankers Life and Casualty Company Center for a Secure Retirement.

What are the ailments or patient profiles that require medical devices that can be used at home? [Sai] What are those medical devices? [Sai] 1. Cardiac Diseases
Heart Disease
Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
Uncontrolled hypertension
Cardiac Arrhythmia

Early Intervention
Home Health’s Care Team consists of nurses, therapists and pharmacists. This
team provides: Start of care visit with 24 hours after discharge
Coordination of follow up physician appointments and ongoing in-home nursing and therapy care 24/7 clinical support
Behavior Modification
Home Health nurses engage patients and caregivers in their health management by: Coaching the patient and caregiver on long-term behavior modifications, such as diet, exercise and medication compliance Educating the patient and caregiver on warning signs and action plans specific to the patient’s condition Encouraging the patient to begin in-home cardiac rehab incorporating both physical and occupational therapy Daily Vital Sign Monitoring

Telehealth nurses are experts at quickly identifying when intervention is necessary using the Philips telehealth system to daily monitor the following as needed: Weight
Blood Pressure
Pulse
Blood Glucose Level
Blood Oxygen Level
Heart Rhythm

2. Joint replacements:

Transitions the patient from the hospital to the comfort of home Provides home nursing and therapy as prescribed by the patient’s physician Decreases the chance of post-surgical injury by reducing the need to travel outside the home Prevents repeat hospital visits by identifying potential risk factors Dedicated care team to each patient, which includes a Patient Care Coordinator and involves Nurses, Physical Therapists and Occupational Therapists as needed.

Patient Care Coordinator
A dedicated Care Coordinator is available to every patient to aid in the transition from the hospital to home Provides educational resources and answer the patient’s questions before and after surgery Facilitates deliver
of equipment and medical supplies to the patient’s home Coordinates home care prior to the patient’s discharge

Assists in scheduling post-surgical physician appointments
Post-Surgical Care Team
Physical and Occupational Therapy
Provides Exercises to improve mobility, balance and strength Evaluate the home environment for potential hazards and label or remove them as necessary Home Health’s fall prevention and awareness program, to assess and reduce future fall-risk Solaris Light Therapy for joint and muscle pain control, inflammation and tissue repair Nursing Services

Blood draws
IV antibiotics and anti-coagulants, including dosing services if necessary Wound care
Telehealth to monitor vitals daily

Fall prevention
Falls are the leading cause of injury, immobility and nursing home placement for seniors. In fact, every year 1 in 3 seniors over the age of 65 fall, resulting in over 2 million emergency room visits. In addition, 25% of hospital admissions and 40% of nursing home placements are fall-related. Of these, hip fractures are the most serious and lead to the greatest number of health problems. Fall-Risk Factors

Age 65 or older
History of falls
Incontinence
Visual impairment
Environmental hazards
Taking more than four medications
Pain while walking or standing
Medical conditions that impair judgement or coordination
Home Health’s 4 step fall prevention and awareness program, increases independence and safety by improving mobility, balance and strength. Evaluate
Conduct an in-home screening to determine the patient’s risk of falling using two standardized, nationally recognized risk evaluation tools Nurses review current medical conditions and medications that could affect fall-risk Occupational therapists evaluate the home environment for potential hazards and label or remove them as necessary Exercise

Physical and Occupational therapists assist patients with exercises to improve mobility, balance and strength Educate
Therapists teach strategies for safe fall recovery
Nurses and therapists provide reference information on how to prevent falls Residential Home Health receives immediate notification of any fall occurrence for patients who are enrolled in our Philips Lifeline emergency response system

Engage
Clinicians include the patient and caregiver in the care and treatment to prevent falls after formal care by Residential Home Health is concluded

Alzheimer’s
Increase patient participation in everyday activities
Reduce caregiver stress and anxiety
Individualize treatment based upon standardized dementia assessments:Based upon the results of several nationally-recognized and evidence-based assessments,MindCare is customized to meet the unique needs of each patient and caregiver at any stage of dementia Medical Social Workers, Nurses, Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists and Speech Therapists as needed to provide the following: Caregiver Support and Education

Education on the seven stages of dementia and recommendations to help manage the physical, mental and behavioral challenges of each stage Community assistance and long-term planning
Educational resources related to the specific needs of the patient and caregiver Strategies for Living with Dementia
Evaluation and strategies to improve patients’ everyday activities such as eating, bathing, and dressing Swallowing and communication exercises to
improve patients’ social interaction. Assessment and recommendations to improve patients’ cognitive function(problem-solving, memory, and thought process) Techniques to help prevent incontinence

Safety
Evaluation of the home environment for potential hazards
and assistance with labeling or removing them as necessary.
Residential Home Health’s fall prevention and awareness program, to assess and reduce risk.

Are there any geographic concentrations of potential customers? This may give us an indication on where to start efforts [Sai] https://www.metlife.com/assets/cao/mmi/publications/studies/mmi-studies-boomer-profile-2007.pdf

Documentation/stats that support our decision [Sai]
Mentioned above

Who would the new competitors be in this market? Is it already saturated with competitors? If so, do we try selecting a different market? (Porter’s 5 forces?) [Sai]

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