Staying in Your Own Home with Comfort, Safety and Confidence
March 3, 2017
Tim and Kathy* have been together since they were teenagers. Throughout their 60-plus year marriage, they have held their vows close to heart, including “in sickness and in health.” As Kathy’s Parkinson’s advanced, Tim’s role as a caregiver became overwhelming. Tim’s years in sales didn’t prepare him for the nursing and caregiving duties he now performed on a daily basis. Putting Kathy’s needs first, while well-intended, was having a negative effect on his own health.
According to researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a total of about 43 million U.S. adults provide unpaid care for someone with a serious health condition each year. These often-unsung heroes provide hours of assistance to others. “One important insight from our research is that because of the stress and time demands placed on caregivers, they are less likely to find time to address their own health problems” said Dr. Richard J. Hodes, director of NIH’s National Institute on Aging.
Fortunately, there is help. “We see so many spouses and adult children, who take on the role of caregiver, experiencing high levels of stress,” said Sandy Ruka, Executive Director of Visiting Nurse Home Care and Hospice of Carroll County and Western Maine (VNHCH). “Everyone’s needs are different,” Ruka added. “We are here to help people remain in their own homes with comfort, safety and confidence whether they are recovering from an injury or surgery or to age in place.”
VNHCH offers a wide variety of services to meet their clients’ needs at many levels. Care is coordinated with the client’s physicians, hospitals, and other area healthcare agencies to ensure the overall health plan is in harmony with the client’s best interests. VNHCH’s Skilled Services provide professional care by Registered Nurses and Physical, Occupational and Speech Therapists.
The Chronic Disease Management Team works with clients and their healthcare providers in creating a plan to help the client reach his/her own life goals. VNHCH offers a range of specialty care services such as wound care, ostomy care, behavioral health, and more.
Licensed Nursing Assistants are available for help with daily living activities and personal care services and home health aides and homemakers to provide assistance with routine household tasks.
For the end-of-life journey, VNHCH offers compassionate Hospice care to clients and their families with support from physicians, nurses, spiritual caregivers, social workers, home health aides and specially trained volunteers.
VNHCH also offers a variety of programs, workshops and support groups. The Care for the Caregiver Support Group meets on Wednesdays to help people build healthy self-care into their own lives while caregiving for others. For more information on this and other services and programs, visit the website at VNHCH.org or call 603-356-7006 or 800-499-4171.
VNHCH is there for you as your healthcare partner. Passionate people. Compassionate care.
*Not real names. Profile is based on a range of clients.