Healthy Aging: Having Control Over Your Healthcare Options
For more than 20 years, the month of September has been recognized as Healthy Aging® Month. The concept started as a way to inspire adults, ages 45-plus, to learn about and improve their physical, mental, social, and financial well-being. Healthy Aging® Month has taken on greater importance as the baby boomer generation has grown to more than 76 million people in the United States alone.
This year’s theme revolves around reinventing yourself to begin forming habits that will help you be healthier and maintain your independence as you age. Some tips to prompt your thinking about ways to reinvent yourself include:
· Act Like Your Younger Self
· Be More Positive
· Stay Away From Negative People
· Put More Pep In Your Step
· Work On Standing Straighter
· Practice Better Dental Health
· Be With Friends and Family
· Walk 10,000 Steps Each Day
· Set Up Your Annual Check-Ups
· Take an Art or Music Class
Another reason for trying to live, eat, and be healthier as we age is having more control over our healthcare options if medical issues do arise. Most of us have our sights set on remaining as independent as possible through the years, and this includes times of recovery from health issues. Today’s home health care options are increasing as more people seek nursing care and outpatient therapy services in the home.
Home Health Care is considered when intermittent care is medically sufficient. Medicare defines intermittent care as less than seven days a week, less than eight hours a day, or a period of time less than 21 days. Skilled nursing services are provided in the home by a registered nurse or LPN. Physical and occupational therapies or speech pathology services can also be provided by licensed therapists. While the types of services available for home health care continue to evolve, there will always be a need for more traditional care given at a Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF). Care at an SNF is provided by the same types of healthcare professionals as home health care, including RNs, LPNs, and physical, occupational, and speech therapists. SNF services are not only charged with short-term rehabilitation from illness or injury but also include long-term care for those who require frequent and more intensive medical attention due to a chronic medical issue.
Typically, those needing rehabilitative care prefer home health care whenever possible, yet healthcare market research indicates that on average, 54% of all hospital patients are discharged to SNFs versus home health care agencies. In many states, this number is closer to 70% based on home health care availability and historical precedence. The data also shows that the costs of SNF care are more than ten times that of home health care.
If you are over the age of 45, take time this month to assess your individual health and lifestyle habits to determine if you need to “reinvent” yourself. Healthy Aging® Month is the perfect time to begin making the necessary changes that will help you live life to the fullest, maintain your independence longer, and gain more control over your health.
Supplemental Health Care has incredible opportunities available for nurses and allied health professionals in home health care and skilled nursing facilities around the country. Search for the perfect job now, or contact a recruitment professional for more information.