As the population continues to age, more of us are faced with many decisions regarding our health and the health of our loved ones we thought we would never have to make. These decisions may occur suddenly following hospitalization, or gradually as we see needs are becoming more difficult to meet in everyday life. At this point, skilled nursing services may be an option for us to choose from.
Skilled nursing services may be provided to you or your loved one at some point in life. It is important to be familiar with what this service entails. Skilled nursing is a type of health care services provided for you when you need licensed and skilled professionals, such as nurses or rehabilitation staff, to manage, observe and evaluate your care. Skilled nursing care is usually available 24 hours per day for any needs that may arise depending upon your situation. This will ensure that proper progress is made toward your goals to maintain your optimal levels of functioning. Skilled services include direct care provided by licensed nursing staff, physical therapy services, occupational therapy and speech therapy. All of the services mentioned are considered as skilled care by Medicare. Ultimately, if any service can be provided for you safely by a non-medical person, or by yourself, without the supervision of a nurse it is not considered skilled care.
Skilled nursing care refers to care given and/or supervised by registered nurses. Skilled home health nursing services generally brings intermittent skilled services by licensed professionals into the home of an individual. These services serve to restore and maintain his or her maximal level of functioning and health, and have the goal to prevent the current problem from worsening as long as possible. The care provided is carried out from physician orders and must be performed by a licensed professional due to being inherently complex for a layperson to complete. Therefore, the care must be provided by a professional so that a desired medical result will occur. Skilled nursing services must also be reasonable and necessary for the treatment of the current illness or injury. The nurses provide direct care such as administration of IV medications, immunizations, tube feedings, changing dressings, and educating the patient and caregivers about the current health situation so that they remain 100% informed.
Nurses also manage, observe and evaluate a patient’s care, meaning they are the ones responsible for all care provided for a patient from other staff below them, such as licensed practical nurses or nursing assistants. It is then their responsibility to follow-up on the care provided to the patient to ensure efficacy and patient/family satisfaction toward positive progress. Evaluation by nursing staff occurs by following a plan of care specific to the needs of each patient regarding their health situation. Evaluation will occur by observing the progress made by each individual toward the goals set forth in their plan of care. If the nurse sees that progress is not going as well as planned, the care plan goals may be adjusted according to the ability and participation of the individual. Skilled care provided should always be patient-centered, and the nursing staff should always make sure each patient is as involved in their care as they possibly can be for the best results.
Total Home Health has a program available for those requiring skilled nursing services per physician orders and a developed plan of care. Skilled nursing visits will be performed in the home for you as much as your condition and situation warrants. The licensed professionals with Total Home Health will accompany you in your journey into making your life less difficult and get you back into the swing of your everyday life. Our goal is to keep you as the center of our attention with our skilled nursing services. Your health and safety will always be our number one concern!