Care Plan Maintains Quality of Life

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Mrs. Ellin, the 94 year old matriarch of her family, was used to being in charge. A strong-willed and capable woman, she had, along with her husband, built a successful business, which she continued to operate after he passed away.

During her hospital stay, Mrs. Ellin’s attending physician recommended that Paula, her daughter, enlist the services of a geriatric care manager from Elderlife Experts, a division of Ivory House Health Services. Mrs. Ellin was resisting help and attempting to leave the hospital before her challenges could be adequately addressed. Paula was feeling more than a little overwhelmed in her role as caregiver for her mother.

Sue Maddox, a geriatric care manager with Elderlife Experts and RN with extensive clinical experience, was brought in to help the family. As a first step, Sue suggested that Paula go home for some much needed rest. Sue realized how important it was for Paula to trust that her mother was being well cared for while taking the necessary time to care for herself.

Sue stayed with Mrs. Ellin for a few hours until the first of several Ivory House Health Services certified nursing assistants (CNAs) arrived. They provided the personal care and constant companionship that made the remainder of Mrs. Ellin’s four day hospital stay more comfortable. The hospital was then able to reassess her medications, which she had been taking inconsistently and in inappropriate doses. Once her medications were regulated, many of her symptoms disappeared.

Shortly thereafter, Mrs. Ellin was discharged to a rehabilitation facility. She continued to be followed closely by Sue Maddox and to receive twenty-four hour care by CNAs. The Elderlife Experts team of health care professionals then began to address the changes that needed to be made so that Mrs. Ellin could achieve her goal of returning home. Among the recommendations made was that her primary care physician be changed to Dr. Daniel Levy, known to the care managers for his expertise and responsiveness.

Before being discharged from the rehabilitation facility, Mrs. Ellin met with Sue and her daughter to discuss the plan of care that had been developed to allow her to live more safely at home. She agreed to use her walker and to allow the twenty-four hour care, which had been instrumental in her recovery, to continue.

On June 14, 2003, Mrs. Ellin returned to her rancher home, freshly cleaned by her daughter and a neighbor. Sue continues to visit Mrs. Ellin weekly. In her role as geriatric care manager, she oversees the two CNAs who work with Mrs. Ellin and also monitors her medication usage.

When Mrs. Ellin developed a knee problem and needed a wheelchair for a short time, Sue quickly called in the services of a physical therapist to help her client regain use of the walker. Today, Mrs. Ellin continues to walk outside to get her mail along with one of her two CNAs.

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