Home Care and the Lung Cancer Patient

Home care is available for cancer patients in all stages of their disease, be it home health or hospice care. The majority of those patients are battling lung cancer. The American Cancer Society projects that over 140,000 people will die from lung cancer this year, making it by far the leading cause of cancer death among both men and women.

The prognosis for lung cancer can vary widely depending on the cancer type and the stage it is in when diagnosed. Lung cancer may be incurable, but it is almost always treatable. Home health care works with cancer patients who are home bound to provide supportive care and help with the activities of daily living.

Home health also provides help with:

  • Explaining the disease process

  • Counseling for patients and their families

  • Managing patient care

  • Observing treatment progress and advising when adjustments are needed

  • Educating about safety in daily activities and emergencies

  • Monitoring medications

  • Evaluating nutritional needs

Lung cancer patients typically have a team of doctors and specialists working together to eradicate their cancer. This collaboration usually consists of: thoracic surgeons, pulmonologists, palliative care physicians, and medical and radiation oncologists.

Much in that same way, hospice uses a team approach to treat patients. Hospice teams are made up of physicians, nurses, home health aides, social workers, counselors, therapists, volunteers, and chaplains. A cancer patient is generally eligible for hospice care when treatments are no longer effective, and their disease is determined likely to follow its normal path of progression.

Hospice care focuses on quality of life for the patient as well as their family. They minimize patient discomfort through symptom and pain management, while providing respite care, emotional support, and bereavement counseling for family members.

Reach out to the oncologists and cancer treatment centers in your service area with information on how partnering with home health and hospice can improve the quality of care for their cancer patients.

Help your referring partners address the many misinterpretations about hospice and the services they provide for terminally ill patients and their families by visiting the tagwebstore.com : The Real Truth About Hospice Flyer.

Eye Injury Awareness

July is eye injury awareness month which makes this the perfect time to remind everyone about the dangers of fireworks and the injuries they can cause. Thousands of revelers will suffer eye injuries from fireworks mishaps during the four-week span around July 4th.  Fireworks can cause permanent eye damage as result of burns, corneal abrasions, ruptures, and retinal detachment, and according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, 14% of all firework injures reported in 2017 were eyes related injuries.

According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, if an eye injury from fireworks occurs:

  • Seek medical attention immediately.

  • Treat only the most minor eye injuries at home. 

  • Do not rub your eyes.

  • Do not rinse your eyes.

  • Do not apply pressure.

  • Do not remove any objects that are stuck in the eye.

  • Do not apply ointments or take any blood-thinning pain medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen.

Injury statistics from 2017 Fireworks Annual Report: Fireworks-Related Deaths, Emergency Department-Treated Injuries, and Enforcement Activities During 2017:

  • There were 8 fatalities and 12,900 Injuries related to firework accidents.

  • Approximately 8,700 of the fireworks-related injuries were treated in emergency rooms during the two weeks prior to and after July fourth. 

  • An estimated 1,200 of those emergency room visits were associated with sparklers.

  • 70% of those with fireworks-related injuries were male.

  • Children under 15 years of age accounted for more than a third of the firework related injuries.

Home Health offers care for the visually impaired. Common conditions other than injury that cause permanent vision loss include age related macular degeneration (AMD), glaucoma, and diabetic related eye disease.

Spread the word through your social media posts about celebrating safely throughout the summer. Include tips on sun safety, fireworks safety, and the importance of staying hydrated.

Visit tagwebstore.com for patient information on vision health and other conditions commonly treated by home health and hospice caregivers.

Introducing Hospice … kind words for overwhelmed families.

The grieving process often starts the moment someone hears the word hospice. No one is ever prepared to face the news that their loved one will not recover from their illness.  As a result, family members are often in a state of shock, bewilderment, or denial when they first meet with a hospice representative. Kind words, tissues, and enrollment are the beginnings of hospice care.

Simplifying hospice introduction and enrollment should be the goal of every hospice administrator, and any tool that can make the process easier on the patient, family, and the hospice representative is a must have.  

We offer beautifully designed hospice admission books ready for your branding that will convey your message of caring and give families a tangible guide to hospice care. These admission booklets provide you a professional, reassuring presentation as you gather the information required to enroll a patient. They include the necessary information such as service agreements, patient rights, privacy statements, home safety guidelines, and agency information; but they also provide caregiving information with answers to common questions. These books will be a resource for families to refer to throughout the hospice journey which continue long after their loved one’s passing.

Each member of your team will be confident and proud to display this book bearing your agency name to referral partners, peers, patients, families, and potential new associates. Contact us at 866-232-6477 for more information on how we can help you help others.

  

 “Denial helps us to pace our feelings of grief. There is a grace in denial. It is nature's way of letting in only as much as we can handle.”  -- Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

Remote Patient Monitoring and Home Health Care

Home health care is a personalized caregiving service not often associated with technology, yet many agencies now offer state of the art caregiving technology by way of Remote Patient Monitoring systems (RPMS).

RPMS record vital signs and specified patient conditions via smart devices which are monitored by physicians and nurses remotely. This technology brings a new level of care to home health. The problem is that patients and-believe it or not-some physicians don’t know much about it. Be the voice that tells them.

Telehealth and specifically RCMS are means to expand your service area without expanding your staff. Virtual nursing visits can reduce miles driven and increase the nursing presence in the home. RPMS are an added convenience for patients that you can use to increase referrals. If you’re not jumping on board with this technology your agency is falling behind, because your competition is.

Many telehealth and RPMS manufacturers are eager to promote their products and happy help home health and hospice agencies market their technology. Here are a few resources to help get your telehealth program off the ground:

Seek out local pharmacies, clinics, and community organizations to allow your agency to demonstrate how your RPM program works, whereby promoting your agency’s cutting-edge home care services.

We have integrated the latest information on Telehealth and RPMS specifically into a marketing piece that you can use to set your agency apart. Visit our online store: TAGWebstore.com or call us at 866.232.6477 for information on these or other home health and hospice marketing ideas.

Choosing Home Health for Post-Surgical Care

Choosing home health for post-surgical care means choosing a personalized care plan administered by nurses and therapists in the comfort of your home. Home health care provides benefits for patients before and after surgery, especially those with limited access to family caregiving support, or transportation, or those who struggle with chronic medical conditions.

Pre-Surgery, a home health team member evaluates the patient’s home to identify obstacles that may hinder the patient once they begin the at-home recovery process. They then provide solutions and the necessary equipment to assist the patient with the daily activities of living while they recover.

Post-Surgery, home health nurses closely monitor the healing process, oversee wound care, and provide hands-on instruction for care givers. Team medical technicians assist patients with their personal hygiene needs. Team physical and occupational therapists work with patients to set recovery goals and create a rehabilitation plan to achieve them. They evaluate and adjust the regimen as goals are met.

  • Share your post-surgical rehabilitation program with orthopedic clinics, orthopedists, rheumatologists, neurologists, and trauma centers within your service area. We have a variety of customizable condition-specific print materials you can distribute.

  • Most grocery stores offer a senior discount day. These are great opportunities to set up information tables and promote home health in the pharmacy area.

  • Organize a team to take part in local awareness events such as: Osteoporosis Day, Walk to Cure Arthritis, Tour de Cure, Show Your Stripes, Fill the Boot, or Go Red for Women.

  • Partner with local medical equipment retailers to display brochures and build referrals. .

Always promote the convenience of home health with your referral network. We live in a take-out world these days. Home health is the ultimate order-in!

Visit us at TAGWebstore.com to see our line of home health products or give us a call at 866-232-6477 for a marketing consultation and custom media information.

Related Resource: Johns Hopkins: The Road to Recovery After Lumbar Spine Surgery