The recent pandemic has created many challenges in numerous areas of our society, including elder and patient caregiving. For professionals in home care, it is important to balance caring for both our patients as well as ourselves and taking the necessary steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19, which can be particularly harmful to home care patients who are often elderly and already have chronic health conditions.
We at Coastal Home Care are taking every precaution necessary to ensure the health of our patients and staff during these difficult times, following both state and federal guidelines and suggested best practices. We do all of this while also working as hard as we can to continue providing excellent hospice nurse, post-operative, dementia, and elder care services to families and their loved ones throughout Wicomico County, MD. For over ten years, we have dedicated ourselves to serving our patients through personalized caregiving.
Here is how we have continued to provide hospice care throughout the current pandemic:
How Caregivers Should Support Others
During this time, our primary concern has been continuing to give the best possible care to our hospice patients. As we’ve stated before, part of our procedure now includes following guidelines from official sources such as the CDC. Below, we list some of the guidelines we are following most closely when taking care of hospice care and other home care patients:
- Ensuring patients who are sick or are showing symptoms of illness are also following their doctor’s instructions and taking their medication on time.
- Providing over-the-counter medicines when needed to help relieve discomforting symptoms including fever, coughing, as well as aches and pains.
- Assisting them with grocery shopping, filling prescriptions, and performing household chores, to provide them with as much rest as possible.
- Separating patients from their pets, especially when they are sick, as much as possible.
- If they are sick, we make sure they receive plenty of rest and drink a lot of fluids to help alleviate symptoms and recover.
How Caregivers Should Care For Themselves
Additionally, part of our focus within hospice care is to ensure our patients are safe from any potential infections by taking care of ourselves. That is why we are doing our best to prevent the spread of COVID-19 through the various measures recommended specifically to caregivers from the CDC. Here are some of the guidelines we continue to focus on:
- Limiting contact with patients and fellow staff through social distancing, especially when you or they are at a higher risk of severe illness due to COVID-19.
- Decreasing the number and frequency of visitors, thereby decreasing the chances of transmission.
- If you and your patients must be in a shared space, ensure there is increased air circulation to ventilate the respiratory droplets through which the virus is transmitted. This can be done by opening up a window and installing a plug-in fan.
- Eating meals in separate rooms from others, or if your patient must be fed, feeding them in their own room.
- Avoid sharing personal items, especially if you or the other individual are showing signs of sickness.
- Both caregiver and patient should wear face coverings to prevent potential transmissions and to keep one another safe, both at home and while outside of the home.
- Caregivers should also wear gloves whenever they are handling various bodily fluids, and practice washing their hands often or using hand sanitizer.
- Washing ‘high-touch’ areas within the patient’s home as often as possible using soap and water, then household disinfectant.
- Only dispose of waste and other items into trash cans lined with trash bags to easily and safely throw them out. We recommend providing a single lined trashcan specifically for individuals that are sick.
What we notice in this list is that much of what is best for caregivers to do for themselves is also often what is best for our patients, which reflects precisely what we work to do during this challenging time.
Coastal Home Care: Excellent Hospice Nurse Service in Wicomico County, MD
For even longtime home care providers like us, the pandemic has forced us to contend with many issues along with those we often work through with our patients. During this time, we are doing our best to respond effectively and carefully by performing all the best practices we’ve listed above.
We do this to support our communities through the various difficulties beyond those we face, as well as through providing quality hospice nurse support, elder home care, medication management assistance, and many other services that support you and your loved one.
At Coastal Home Care, we seek to help as many patients and families as possible in relieving the pressures and stresses the pandemic has caused. Our Plan of Care procedures are specific to helping families with difficult schedules, financial troubles, and the many concerns involved in providing care to an elder loved one.
Contact us at (866) 687-7307 and schedule a free consultation today.