No one wants to spend any longer than necessary in the hospital. The goal is to get the necessary treatment or procedure over with as soon as possible and move on to recovering. Unsurprisingly, the growing trend in hospital-at-home care services is one being met with open arms. Imagine being able to avoid:
- The bright lights, bells, and alarms that make sleeping difficult
- Loneliness and isolation 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
Hospital level care at 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 least restrictive and most comfortable environment.
There’s nothing to not love about such a program, right?
The Drawback to Receiving Hospital-at-Home Care
While the benefits associated with in-home hospital care are incredible, there is one main factor to think about: 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 bulk 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 be part of the decision-making process about a loved one receiving hospital care at home and to be made aware of the implications it will mean in their own lives. For example, you will want to think through:
- Are you ok with having clinical staff coming in and out of the home at regular intervals?
- Will you be in a position to manage medications and ensure they’re taken as directed?
- Can you handle getting up as required during the night to check on the individual, help them to the bathroom, etc.?
- What will you do in the event of an emergency?
Also consider your current responsibilities and commitments: caring for children, taking care of household chores and errands, working outside of the home, along with other important activities such as spending time with your spouse, nurturing relationships with friends along with other family relations, participating in pastimes and hobbies you enjoy, engaging in healthy lifestyle choices, etc.
It can be helpful to create a quick estimate of just how much time you actually have available to care for a family member at home, considering each of the factors above. If it feels unmanageable or overwhelming, seek out help.
CareWorks Health Services is here to help if a loved one opts to receive hospital-at-home care. We can provide medication reminders, run errands, prepare meals, and take the night shift if you’d like, enabling you to maintain the healthy life balance you’ll need. Contact us at (949) 859-4700 to learn more about how we can help with personalized in-home care services in Seal Beach, Huntington Beach, Mission Viejo, and the surrounding areas.