New behavioral health program covered by Medicare
Under a behavioral health program, a psychiatric nurse visits your senior wherever they live. They help seniors and family manage difficult behavior, cope with caregiving and aging issues, and manage medications.
The best part is that these programs are covered by Medicare (with a doctor’s order). The home health company will even work with doctors to get the correct order written.
Why a behavioral health program is helpful
Talking with an impartial third party about worries, learning coping skills, and understanding that these feelings are normal can relieve a lot of the stress that comes with major life changes. These new programs are especially helpful for seniors and families who are dealing with Alzheimer’s or dementia.
How it helps cope with Alzheimer’s and dementia
Changes in thinking and behavior are scary for caregivers to watch, but are probably the most scary for the older adult who’s actually experiencing them. This can cause them to act out with difficult behavior. A psychiatric nurse can help ease worries, evaluate the need for medication, and teach coping skills.
How it helps with depression and coping with change
Even if your older adult doesn’t have Alzheimer’s or dementia, aging and serious chronic illnesses can be hard to deal with. Working through difficult thoughts and feelings with a psychiatric nurse can significantly improve quality of life for many seniors.
It helps caregivers too!
As a family caregiver, you bear the brunt of your older adult’s unhappiness or difficult behavior. That’s incredibly stressful!
These behavioral health programs work with everyone who’s closely involved in your senior’s care. They’ll help you manage difficult situations and cope with stress. Plus, there are no extra fees!
Why medication management is important
If your senior is on medication to manage behavior, like Haldol or Seroquel, along with their “regular” meds, it can be tricky to balance everything and keep side effects to a minimum. The behavioral health program also helps with medication management, something many doctors don’t have the time or experience to do. With this in-home program, the focus is managing medication to give your senior the best possible quality of life.
Caring for older adults means looking after their mental health as well as taking care of their physical health. After all, nobody who’s scared or deeply unhappy has good quality of life.
In-home behavioral health programs are relatively new, but we expect more and more companies to start offering these services. Ask home health care companies in your area to find out if they have these programs.
Next Step Find an AccentCare location near you or call 1-800-734-1604 to talk with a live person 24/7
By DailyCaring Editorial Staff
Image: Beyond Faith Homecare & Rehab