As the population ages, statistics suggest that elderly individuals are increasingly the primary users of hospital services. They are, in fact, at a far higher risk of having a functional deterioration.
This is one of the reasons why providing the finest possible care for the elderly in hospitals is a priority for every medical institution and for the overall health of every state. They use a patient-centered approach, employing tools and resources to detect and respond to the risks of hospitalization.
This is a critical issue for all medical facilities since the elderly’s health treatment and care are linked to their limited activities, thus they may face additional issues while in the hospital, such as:
- Having to deal with falls
- Being starved or dehydrated and developing a delirium
- Suffering with depression
- Developing incontinence
- Suffering from undiagnosed or inadequately treated pain
- Pressure injuries are on the rise.
Those problems might make it difficult for a patient to maintain a level of independence that permits them to return home.
How Can Hospitals Provide the Best Care for Seniors?
Every hospital should put older people, their families, and those who care for them in the limelight, since this will help them to get the best possible care while in the hospital.
Here are a few evidence-based techniques that might help patients have a better hospital experience and outcomes:
- The individual, not the ailment, is the focus of treatment.
- Because many elderly people have numerous medical problems, medical staff must choose what is most essential to them.
- Keep an eye on the elderly individual for signs and symptoms of clinical decline.
- Encourage the patient to dress, self-care, mobilize, and toilet on their own to promote independence. I’m trying to stay out of bed as much as possible.
- Assisting the patient in eating and drinking, as many older individuals who come to the hospital are malnourished.
- Watch for changes in the patient’s functional and cognitive condition, which might signal that he or she is developing delirium.
- Family and careers should be involved in all parts of care planning since they know the individual best and can provide insight into their pre-morbid level of function.
- Check for emotional and psychological difficulties in the elderly person’s family or caregiver.
- Identify, respond to, and establish a strategy to treat an older person’s pain, which is quite common in this age group.
- Review your prescriptions because elderly adults are more likely to have medication-related issues.
- Recommend that older persons get a complete geriatric examination as soon as feasible.
The Couple’s Arrangement at Queen’s Hospital Burton by Emma Barker
Sister Emma Barker accomplished something that ought to be shared with everyone by following the guidelines for the greatest care for the elderly. She arranged for a couple who had been married for 62 years to meet for the last time.
Both John Wilson, 92, and his wife Marjorie, 88, were at the Queen’s Hospital Burton at the same time. When the staff saw the pair’s condition, they realized they may never see each other again, so Sister Emma Barker arranged for the beds of a couple to be pushed together.
Emma allowed them to hold hands for around ten minutes before taking a photograph of them together, which she later handed to the family as the final time they were together before John died at home.
For Emma, their marriage was interesting, which prompted her to do such action. Because the film was so emotional and compelling, everyone who saw it couldn’t help but cry. After seeing this photo, the family members were very moved, and they sent a touching message to the hospital.
Emma enjoys her job and treats all patients as if they were her family, so being a nurse and caring for people is a natural fit for her. She was aware that this photo had been given to Mr. Wilson’s kid, as well as the information that his parents had met for the last time.
Kurt, the couple’s son, thanked the hospital for the final snapshot and commended personnel for allowing his father to “die like he wanted to, quietly and in his arms.”
He was especially grateful to Sister Emma, who orchestrated everything and even managed to get one last snapshot of the pair together.
Nurse’s Tips for Working with Elderly Patients
Positive results are facilitated by effective communication with hospital patients, and here are ten ideas for nurses on how to approach that positivity:
- Begin with appropriate body language.
- Patience is a virtue to cultivate, as is showing proper respect. Active Listening is a skill that allows you to pay attention.
- Establish rapport by demonstrating sincerity.
- Recognize and Address Sensory Issues.
- Make Sure You’re Having a Good Time Empathy is shown by using simple language.