A Solution to Chronic Disease management?
Creating a care model that suits the increasing needs of RACF residents along with those more independent residents who choose to live in Independent Living Unit arrangements is imperative for a strong healthcare system.
The RACGP reports that “People living in residential aged care facilities (RACFs) present to emergency departments (EDs) at rates of 0.1–1.5 transfers per RACF bed/year, and 40–60% of these presentations are admitted to hospital”.
Alternative needs of care are not only available but being sought by Aged Care Providers. Residents in particular, living in Independent Living Units being of either low or high care needs prefer in the most part to stay in the comfort of their homes where clinically possible.
Telehealth or Telemedicine as it is sometimes called offers many benefits including instant diagnosis by GPs to nursing staff during non-social hours for medication changes and wound care for example. Telephone triage does not always offer peace of mind and to have the ability to teleconference face to face with a qualified GP can offer all participants in the patient’s care a moment of clarity and dependable advice. Having access to care within the facility or own home improves health outcomes and generally provides less stress to the individual. Of great benefit to residents and the staff is the opportunity to reduce the need to call an ambulance and be transported to hospital for instances that are non-life threatening.
Initiating Telehealth models removes obstacles such as distance, time and cost which can often times become barriers to continuity of care. We often hear about Telehealthbeing a solution in particular to rural and remote areas, but convenience and peace of mind are also important to older Australians who have chosen a lifestyle that gives them independence while maintaining social, professional and personal interests in a cared environment.
Chronic Disease Management can greatly benefit from the use of Telehealth whereby blue-tooth linked diagnostic equipment allows real time data to be uploaded ahead of a scheduled appointment or at the same time. These diagnostics are designed to be user friendly so that residents and or their partners or family members can assist with the application. One of the other social benefits of a Telehealth model is not only clinical but social. Residents can use devices to skype with family members who may live overseas or interstate on a regular basis, and there can be no price put on the value of speaking to your loved ones on a regular basis.
We are always looking to partner with like-minded, innovative and holistic vendors and facilities to expand our services to provide a full package of healthy outcomes to Aged Care and Independent Living Providers
“It’s not how long LIFE is but the QUALITY of our LIFE that is IMPORTANT”
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