• Terah Hatter can sum up her job in one word – amazing. Her job, she says, “is about caring.”

    “It’s an honor to walk beside the patient and family to help them through a difficult time,” says Hatter, LMSW, a social worker for, which is an affiliate of Kindred at Home and an agency that provides home health, hospice and private duty nursing care in Texas.

    Read Full Post
  • Helping Patients Move Forward After Brain Injury

    By Kindred Healthcare

    Helping Patients Move Forward After Brain InjuryAn individualized care plan is critical when helping brain injury patients recover and return home. And it takes a team of specialists to tailor the rehabilitation plan so it addresses both the physical, cognitive, and emotional issues involved.

    The brain injury program at Kindred’s Inpatient Rehabilitation Hospitals focuses on helping patients restore function and learn how to do things differently when functions can’t be restored to pre-injury levels. The program combines a multidisciplinary team with the technologies and tools specifically geared toward brain injuries.

    In addition to physician specialists, Kindred’s brain injury team includes rehabilitation trained nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech therapists, clinical dietitians, neuropsychologists, orthotists, social workers and case managers. The therapists often have extensive training in areas such as Neuro-IFRAH, Neurodevelopmental technique, Vital Stim, and more.

    Read Full Post
  • Kindred at Home Hospice Care Supports the Whole Family

    By Kindred Healthcare

    When you learn that someone you love needs hospice care, your first thoughts are of that person. But how you cope with a loved one’s end of life is important, too, which is why hospice provides for the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of patients and their families.

    With Kindred at Home's hospice care, it’s not just the patient who is monitored. The patient’s loved ones also are assessed from the moment the patient is admitted to the program, to make sure they have the resources and support they need, too.

    Kristy Johnke, Kindred’s Regional Director of Social Programs for Home Care and Hospice in Texas, says not everyone fully understands what hospice is. Often, family members equate hospice care with “giving up,” mistakenly assuming that it means medical care is at an end and death is imminent.

    Read Full Post
  • National Nutrition Month: Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right

    By Karen Omietanski, MBA, RD, LD, PMP

     

     Karen Omietanski, MBA, RD, LD, PMP, Senior Director Nutrition, Nursing Center Division Karen Omietanski, MBA, RD, LD, PMP, Senior Director Nutrition, Nursing Center Division

     

    Since 1980, March has been designated as National Nutrition Month®. Take the opportunity this month to focus on what you eat and making the most of your choices. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals, offers these “14 Health Tips for 2014” to help you “Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right”

    Read Full Post
  • What is Low Vision and What Can be Done for it?

    By Kindred Healthcare

    Low vision is a loss of eyesight that cannot be corrected with medicine, surgery or glasses. It can make everyday tasks difficult, such as dressing, cooking, bathing and participating in hobbies, such as gardening, knitting or reading.

    Low vision is typically caused by an eye disease, such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy or retinitis pigmentosa. An eye exam with an ophthalmologist or optometrist can confirm a suspicion of a low vision diagnosis.

    What is Low Vision and What Can be Done for it? There are numerous ways to adjust to life with low vision.

     

    Read Full Post
  • Better Safe Than Scalded

    By Kindred Healthcare

    The first full week in February is Burn Awareness Week. This year, the American Burn Association is focusing on the issue of scalds – a common burn injury – to raise awareness and increase prevention.

    Kathleen Tsalopoulos, East Regional Wound Nurse with Kindred's Nursing Center Division, shared information regarding scald injuries and offered tips on prevention.

    Scald injuries can affect people of all ages, but older adults and those with a disability are particularly vulnerable. Scalding burns are usually a result of spills, splashes, immersion or contact with hot liquids. Older adults have thinner skin, so hot liquids cause deeper wounds even with brief exposure. Additionally, their ability to feel heat may be reduced due to medical conditions or medications.

    Read Full Post
  • The following questions are commonly asked by patients, family members and caregivers after a planned hospital stay. IntegraCare, an affiliate of Kindred at Home, helped to answer these questions and offer further explanation.

    Q: There are usually many key players taking care of the patient, but is there someone that the patient and or family can go to for resources prior to and after discharge from a facility?

    A: Case managers are assigned to a patient upon admission and follow the patient until the patient transitions to the next setting. Case managers meet one-on-one with the family and assess the needs of the patient during hospitalization and post hospitalization. They are also available to answer any questions and follow up with concerns from both the patient and family.

    Q: You hear a great deal about discharge planning. What exactly is discharge planning?

    Read Full Post
  • Some Holiday Reminders to Slow Down and Take It Easy

    By Kindred Healthcare
     Dr. Sally Brooks Dr. Sally Brooks

    Sally L. Brooks, Nursing Center Division Vice President, Physician and Medical Development, shares her suggestions for caregivers and those receiving care from loved ones during the holidays.

    Like many others, I am smack dab in the middle of the sandwich generation. The holidays are stressful for caregivers. My father passed this fall but Mom needs me now more than ever. My kids all have school activities that increase over the holidays.

    Read Full Post
  • What are Pressure Ulcers and Why are They a Problem?

    By Kindred Healthcare

    Have you ever heard the term “bed sore” before? “Bed sore” is another way of saying “pressure ulcer,” a condition that occurs when pressure, with or without friction, builds up in an area of the body, such as the sacrum, coccyx, heels or hips, particularly in an immobile person. Pressure obstructs blood flow to the soft tissue, causing injury to the area. Because pressure ulcers can develop in patients confined to wheelchairs or beds in a hospital or long-term care facility, caregivers must be well trained in preventing pressure ulcers and treating them early and effectively when they do develop. The more advanced a pressure ulcer gets, the harder it is to treat and the longer it may take to heal.

    Read Full Post
  • Palliative Care FAQs

    By Kindred Healthcare
    Palliative Care FAQs What is palliative care?

     

    Palliative care is interdisciplinary care that seeks to improve quality of life and relieve suffering for those with advanced diseases.

    Where is palliative care delivered?

    What is needed for a patient to receive palliative care?

    A physician order for referral to/for palliative care.

    Who typically delivers palliative care and how is it reimbursed?

    Palliative care is reimbursed as a medical service – like seeing a primary care provider or a specialist – and payment goes to the practitioner who provides it, such as a nurse practitioner or physician. A claim is submitted for the visit, just like in the outpatient or inpatient setting, with a code for palliative care. Most palliative care teams incorporate other disciplines that often do the pre-visit prep (through a nurse, nurse practitioner, social worker or chaplain) and the post-visit follow ups.

    Who qualifies for a palliative care consult?

    Read Full Post