Coping with the changes that come with aging can be difficult for anyone. But when an older adult’s situation is compounded by complicated medical problems, it can become unbearable. Family members are often drawn into the fray, losing time at work and home, still unable to secure the type of care their loved one needs.
However, medical management for seniors can help take the burden off patients and family members. It gives them advice, support, and advocacy while putting them back in the driver’s seat when it comes to healthcare.
Communication with providers
Communicating with medical providers and trying to get quality care is a massive undertaking. If your loved one suffers from more than one ailment, the overwhelm can only increase. However, studies show that hampered communications between doctors and patients can have severe consequences.
In a best-case scenario, it can lead to a great deal of stress and frustration. In a worst-case scenario, your loved one’s health can be seriously compromised. For instance, if an older adult has trouble understanding prescription instructions given by a doctor, they may end up taking too much or too little medication. Both situations can have injurious (and even deadly) consequences.
Sometimes, it can be difficult to absorb all the information given during medical appointments, or make decisions about care options on the spot. Also, certain conditions can make it hard for the patient to get the most out of their medical appointments. These include issues such as hearing or vision loss, cognitive deficits, or poor memory.
A professional medical manager helps coordinate care among multiple providers and conditions. They are the go-to person when it comes to making sure your loved one understands and follows a health care plan. They can attend appointments with your loved one, document the visit, and arrange for follow-up care. They can also advocate for the patient, and provide written reports to families or providers to help further communication.
Coordination of supplies and services
Medical supplies and services often have a confusing language and system all their own. Jargon used by health care workers can make it difficult to understand what needs to be ordered and when, as well as how to use such items. Supplies can include anything from maintenance medications to oxygen tanks and wound care materials. Medical managers cut through the jargon, and develop a system to ensure your loved one gets exactly what they need when they need it.
Giving you peace of mind
Unless you’re geriatric specialist or work in a health care field with older adults, you’re unlikely to know everything necessary to keep them thriving. And in reality, you shouldn’t be expected to. You may have your own job and activities that you need to manage. As much as it might help your loved one, it’s not feasible for you to go back to school and get a degree in nursing, social work, or medical administration. Such a degree would take years to earn anyway, and even more years to learn how to apply effectively.
But your loved one needs help now. Having someone to step in and handle situations when you’re unable can give you great peace of mind. No longer do you have to fight a healthcare system that’s as broad as it is confusing. Instead, you can concentrate on spending time with your loved one, knowing their health is in good hands.
Quality medical management for seniors can make a real difference
Quality medical management for seniors can make a real difference in your loved one’s life. You’ll know what is and isn’t working, which will help you and them plan for a healthy future. You’ll decrease the risk of medical emergencies and premature mortality. Finally, you’ll have peace of mind with the knowledge that you’re no longer alone in the quest for your loved one’s well-being.
If you are unsure of how to best help an aging loved one, the trained and compassionate staff at the Institute on Aging is here to help you make that decision and gain the best in at-home care for older adults. Contact us to find out more.