Archive for April, 2013

A Look at Care-Management Systems

Tuesday, April 30th, 2013

A recent article from the Washington Post explores an extremely effective care-management system company called Health Quality Partners. Care-management systems use medical information to create care programs tailored to the individual. These care programs involve regular contact and interaction between the caregivers and patients.

Health Quality Partners focuses on making the patients comfortable by visiting the patients in their homes. They feel there is a huge value in regular, personal visits with patients for a few reasons.

1. The patients feel much more comfortable in their own home.

The patients are not in a hospital talking to a doctor, but talking with a friend in their own home. This makes them more likely to open up to the caregiver, share information and ask questions.

2. There is much more value in visiting the patient in person as opposed to simply “checking in” over the phone.

Most care-management systems rely on nurses sitting in call centers, checking up on patients over the phone. Health Quality Partners puts an emphasis on behavior and living environment. The personal interaction helps the caregiver better understand the patient’s needs and habits, which allows them to keep the patient healthier.

An independent analysis concluded that Health Quality Partners reduced hospitalization by 33% and cut Medicare costs by 22%. The effectiveness of the program paired with the cost savings could revolutionize the way care-management systems work.

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A Caregiver’s Guide to Diabetes

Thursday, April 18th, 2013

The United States has a diabetic population of almost 27% for those over the age of 65. Many caregivers work with elderly people who have diabetes; however, many don’t realize that the condition is unique to age. Dr. Medha Munshi, a geriatrician and endocrinologist who runs the Geriatric Diabetes program at the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston, Mass, says that “treating a 40-year-old the same ways as an 80-year-old is inappropriate.”

In order to properly help seniors with diabetes, caregivers must understand the different problems that seniors face. The American Diabetes Association offers a Senior Signatures Series that provides resources that can help caregivers and older adults understand geriatric diabetes and educate others.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also has a number of resources that can help caregivers and seniors learn more about diabetes.