Ms. Nadya Al Anzi, Executive Director of Nursing for the Private Nursing Service and Home Health Care Service at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) says providing multidisciplinary homecare that focuses on improving mobility, physical, and mental health helps keep elderly patients in their homes where they are most comfortable and is allowing more elderly residents to live independently. She says the homecare team works with patients, their families, and caregivers to provide individualized care to more than 1,850 elderly patients each month.
“Each month, our multidisciplinary care teams conduct home visits to more than 1,850 elderly patients. During each visit, our teams perform all required clinical examinations and also review each patient’s care plan. A priority for our teams is enhancing the quality of life of our elderly patients by helping them to improve their mobility and live more independently, where possible,” said Ms. Al Anzi.
“Our teams provide health education to patients and educate their families and caregivers about the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle and remaining integrated into the community. Our staff is also able to refer patients to other specialized HMC services and clinics, including the memory clinic, falls prevention clinic, physiotherapy, and occupational therapy, as required,” added Ms. Al Anzi.
Ms. Al Anzi said an important part of the homecare service involves helping family members and other caregivers to provide the best possible care for elderly residents, which she says often involves providing health education and training for primary caregivers. She says her team can make recommendations that can make an elderly person’s home safer and more accessible. She says as the activities of daily living become more challenging, assistive devices such as grab bars, adaptive clothing and shoes, and adjustable beds can help extend independence.
“The large majority of our patients are housebound, temporarily or permanently and we work with patients as well as their family and other caregivers, to ensure they receive the care required. We also serve elderly patients with more stable health conditions who require ongoing support but do not require care that is delivered in a hospital setting,” said Ms. Al Anzi.
HMC’s Home Health Care Service has significantly expanded since officially launching in 2003. The service was initially accredited by Joint Commission International (JCI) in 2009 and recorded an increase of 11.7% in activity in 2018 compared to 2017; in 2017 the service recorded 64,545 home visits compared to 72,088 home visits in 2018.
According to Ms. Al Anzi, the elder care team includes physicians, nurses, wound care specialists, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, speech therapists, dietitians, social workers, health educators, pharmacists, and respiratory therapists. She says once a patient is referred to the service, the team conducts an initial assessment and develops an individualized care plan. According to Ms. Al Anzi, there is an emphasis on ensuring the patient, their family, and caregivers are all involved in the planning and delivery of the care provided.