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The following article was published in Your Health Magazine. Our mission is to empower people to live healthier.
Darryl A. Hill, MD
Healthcare At Home
Laurel Medical Associates, LLC
. http://laurelmedicine.com

Healthcare At Home

It’s funny how healthcare, like life, really does come full circle. Do you recall the days of yesterday, when you had a genuine relationship with your doctor? They truly cared for you, were there when you were sick and really needed them? More importantly, when they had to, they even came to your home. Those days could very well make a dramatic return to our healthcare culture over the next 3-5 years.

A perfect storm could well be on the way that will make it more common to have a doctor perform these services for you in your home. This storm is the result of the following issues that are now prevalent in our healthcare system.

Firstly, our healthcare system cannot afford to ignore patients who are forced to obtain high priced care in the emergency room. Secondly, hospitals will be penalized financially if homebound patients keep showing up in the emergency room. As a result there is more pressure to closely monitor and care for these patients. Thirdly, we have a large population of patients that have significant difficulty leaving their homes. This can be a result of a stroke, weakness, heart failure or other chronic medical condition. The cost to transport this person one way can easily approach a thousand dollars and makes it difficult to pay for this non-covered service.

When providing healthcare to patients in a home care program one tends to learn a lot about the power of love, commitment and sacrifice that both patients and their families endure.

MJ is a patient who had a stroke and is confined to her bed all day, every day with multiple medical problems. She is unable to walk, use the bathroom or take care of herself. When an emergency occurs, she is forced to call 911 and have them carry her out of the house. Her daughter has been forced to quit her job and take care of her mother all day. She does get a break at times by hiring an aid to come in for $15 an hour. She has no desire to be in a nursing home. Without her home care doctor, she would not be able to receive any medical care from a doctor. She has now been in a home care program for about three years and rarely has had a need to go to the hospital.

We will need to change our healthcare infrastructure and how we pay for these services. Patients will be happier because they will be in their homes and receiving care that is customized to their wishes.

It is rewarding to see just how much home care medicine continues to grow. This national growth will be the answer to helping patients get the care and service they need in their homes.

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