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Vol.20, No.1
Senior housing options
Pages 4 & 5
Your Link To Community Resources
A Publication of the Area Agency on Aging 1-B Spring 2018
Serving the counties of Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, St.Clair and Washtenaw
Avoiding a hospital readmission
Making the most of your food dollar
In 2016, over half of the hospitals in the U.S. were penalized by Medicare for excessive patient hospital readmissions within 30 days of their discharge. Those unplanned readmissions cost Medicare more than $15 billion that year.
No one wants to be in the hospital unless they have to be. So how can hospital readmissions be reduced?
In examining Medicare readmissions, there are three critical stages where potential problems might arise. The first is the admission process, the second is during discharge, and third is when the patient returns home.
How hospitals are aiming to reduce readmissions
To meet the specialized needs of adults age 65+, many hospitals like Beaumont Health Systems and St. Joseph Mercy Health Systems, have opened Senior Emergency Rooms. Board certified health professionals with specialized geriatric training deliver care by standards aimed at long-term health and wellness. More attention is focused on the intake evaluation to assess root causes of the visit, such as a heart condition, pre-existing conditions or multiple medications.
In addition, many hospitals have instituted a patient-focused pre- discharge with an emphasis on care
Eating well can be a challenge if you’re living on a fixed income. If unexpected expenses come up, some seniors might cut corners by eating less, having less nutritious meals, or by making meals that lack variety that could decrease appetite.
When a financial crunch meets a fading appetite, the result can be a one- two punch to your health, but there are ways to be a winner in this situation.
Registered Dietitian and owner of RDEXPERT Nutrition Consulting Services, Karen Jackson-Holzhauer said, “Keeping up our appetite as we age is just as important as what we put on our plate in striving to maintain our energy and daily nutrient needs to avoid unintentional weight loss.” She offered some tips and tricks to eat well while stretching your grocery dollar.
Strategy #1: Remember to “dine”
“Prepare yourself to enjoy a good meal. Set the table, sit in a comfortable position in a stress-free, friendly environment that’s clear of clutter and distractions. Invite someone over to share a meal, or dine out at a local senior center where you can get an affordable, nutritious hot meal and catch up with friends,” Karen suggested. You can find healthy meal tips at older-adults.
Strategy #2: Get the juices flowing
If your appetite is low there are a few things you can do to perk it up. “Stimulate your taste buds with an alcohol-free tomato juice cocktail. Add a celery stick, a few dashes of a steak sauce like A-1, add a splash of lime juice, and pepper for taste. Or if you’re not into having a beverage, nibble on a few crackers or other salted tidbits to activate digestive juices. Increased stomach acid (hydrochloric acid) can also boost your immune response to fight off the flu or symptoms associated with chronic disease,” Karen said.
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continuity, patient education, clear discharge instructions, a thorough review of prescribed medications, and a follow-up appointment scheduled in advance to prevent a lapse in care.
Since monitoring health conditions once at home is an issue, some hospitals are testing the effectiveness of an in-home remote monitoring system that directly connects to a physician’s office tracking a patient’s vital signs.
If health falters, the doctor is alerted. This high-tech solution may become a more popular measure hospitals use to reduce readmissions.
Know before you go
A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine last year continued on page 2
Inside This Issue
Help After a Hospital Stay................3 Senior Housing Options ............4 & 5
Ask the Expert/Upcoming
Wellness Classes..............................6
Groceries Delivered
to Your Door....................................7
Area Agency on Aging 1-B
29100 Northwestern Hwy., Suite 400 Southfield, MI 48034

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