Depression in Long Term Care Heart Patients Often Goes UntreatedWritten by Dr Mike Shery
Continued from page 1
Triggers for referral for a psychological evaluation include symptoms that have continued for more than two weeks or significantly impair functioning, life quality or participation in prescribed treatment programs. The role of heart doctors in detecting psychological problems in their patients who are long term care residents is a big problem. They often don't have time because of new emphasis on quick turnaround and high productivity. That places onus squarely on long term care staff who see resident every day.
One remedial protocol to identify residents who really need help might be for nurses and other staff members to help screen residents before they meet with their cardiologists. Neglecting identification and treatment of psychological symptoms in residents with heart disease is very unfortunate because doctors now have effective tools to treat psychological problems, which might lead to a lessening of both psychological distress and cardiac dysfunction.
Copyright 2005, M. Shery http://www.nursinghomes.md/
Dr. Michael Shery is the founder of Long Term Care Specialists in Psychology, a mental health firm specializing in consulting to the long term care industry. Its website, www.NursingHomes.MD provides state-of-the-art mental health treatment, facility staffing and career information to long term care professionals. _____________________________________________________________
Assisted Living Facilities – What Are They?Written by Alex Jensen
Continued from page 1
Assisted Living communities are closely involved in health needs of their residents. They often have a person designated to oversee this called a ‘Health Care Director’. They coordinate monitoring of health related issues involving medication, diet, personal hygiene, socialization and mental acuity to assist senior and their family as they interact with health care professionals. If a decline is noted in a specific area, family and health care professionals are consulted by Health Care Director to resolve issues. Often, because of their experience, unexpected emergency health issues are avoided, as signs of a decline recognized and acted upon early.
Residents can live at ‘Assisted Living’ communities for many years, even as their health declines considerably. Many offer hospice care and end of life assistance. If you are considering senior care options, assisted living facilities are definitely an option worth looking into.
Alex Jensen is with Careplacement.com - a free placement service for Southern California. Care Placement's staff can review your care requirements to determine whether skilled nursing care, assisted living facilities or board and care homes are a viable option for seniors.