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Home Care Options After Hospital Discharge

home care after hospital dischargeOne major issue that concerns the healthcare sector is the increased number of patients being readmitted to the hospitals soon after the release. This highlights the need to improve the current aftercare practice and the need to provide the patient with the appropriate home-based approaches. Still, there are steps that you could take to avoid readmission of the patient and further improve their health.

The patient is suggested to work on effective transition management with the help of their healthcare providers and families to avoid errors and incidents after the discharge. The first few days after the discharge home are the most important since the patients can experience high complication risks for possible readmissions. Post-discharge care faces several challenges:
  1. Day Gaps in Nursing Care: VNA (Visiting Nurse Associations) patients often find themselves in a care gap on the first post-discharge day since a VNA nurse’s visit is usually on the second day.
  2. Medication Management Issues: Patients can find themselves confused about the prescribed medications. They often receive some medication in rehab, but the rest needs to be picked up at the pharmacy. This can be a problem, especially for those people who lack family assistance or are not self-sufficient.
  3. State of Home: Sometimes patients are sent back home after a stay of up to 20 days in a hospital and/or rehabilitation facility. Items such as spoiled food in fridges, restocking groceries, and pending laundry can become a burden in need to be taken care of and delay the rehabilitation process.
  4. Mobility Issues and Access to Care: The majority of these patients find it difficult to walk, so they are unable to make any clinic visits. Caregivers are also faced with an enormous burden.

This increases the importance of comprehensive and quality home care. According to the National Association for Home Care and Hospice, home care is a cheaper option for individuals who are recovering after being discharged from hospitals and cannot take care of themselves. Good home care should involve:

  • Proper Client Assessment: A thorough evaluation of the specific health needs, and home environment of the patient with the purpose to identify the required care and resources needed for a great recovery.
  • Participation in Discharge Planning: Working together with health care providers and family members in order to prepare the patient to transition smoothly from the hospital to home to prevent readmission.
  • Designing of Individual Care Plans: Detailing specific measures and required medical assistance for the home-based recovery of each patient depending on his own health demands, wishes, …
In general, a good home care service tackles the medical concerns of the clients in order to speed up recovery and avoid readmission. The major elements include managing medication,  communicating with family members and caregivers, and helping with routine tasks like bathing and transport.

Improving home care after hospital discharge helps the recovery of patients, prevents early readmission, decreases medical expenditures, and raises the level of care.

National Association for Home Care and Hospice
Planning care before you leave hospital
Al Sibani, M., Al-Maqbali, J. S., Yusuf, Z., & Al Alawi, A. M. (2022). “Incidence and risk factors for 28 days hospital readmission.

Founded in 2008, Ezra Home Care offers live-in home care, 24-hour care, and hourly senior care.
All our caregivers are state-certified and provide services like personal carehousekeepingcompanionship, help with medication, and transportation assistance. We've spent 15 years refining our caregiver selection process to ensure families' peace of mind. Reach out for details and quotes.

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