There’s No Place Like Home

New Program Helps Patients Transition from the Hospital

Coming home from the hospital can be challenging, especially for seniors and those who are chronically ill. Many older adults struggle with managing their medications, scheduling follow-up appointments with their doctors and taking care of meals and household duties.

A new program funded by the Lexington Medical Center Foundation will make it easier for patients who need a little extra help after they leave the hospital. The “Hospital to Home” program provides non-medical assistance for eligible patients in their homes. These additional services can sometimes mean the difference between returning home to improve a patient’s health or going to a nursing home or other facility.

“We believe patients who want to improve their health and remain at home are better able to do so with the proper support,” said Katherine Watts, director of Medical Social Services at Lexington Medical Center. “The Hospital to Home program is just one way we are able to help our patients remain as independent and healthy as possible after they leave our hospital.”

To qualify for the program, patients must meet eligibility requirements and complete an assessment to determine their individual needs. They’re then assigned a home care aide from a local home care agency who can assist them in a variety of ways, providing them with up to 20 hours of support at no cost to the patient. Aides provide help with personal care, meal preparations, assistance with transportation and medication management.

Katherine notes the program has already proven valuable to many patients at the hospital, citing one specific example she remembers clearly.

“We enrolled one of our patients in this program to help him transition to his home instead of a long-term care facility,” she said. “He had been working with therapists at the hospital but was still unable to complete everyday activities such as dressing himself and making meals. We were able to provide these services for his first three weeks at home, and now he is functioning independently.”

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