A hospital stay that requires extended, skilled care or rehabilitation often brings with it some anxiety and stress. While the preferred choice is likely going home, the extent of the condition and follow-up therapy may dictate a stay in a short term skilled care center.
How can you ensure a smooth transition from hospital to post acute care?
Use these nine questions to help you choose the right post acute care that gets you back home quickly, reduces your chances of readmission, and alleviates some of the anxiety and stress you may be feeling.
Three Questions to Ask Before Moving to Skilled Care
Before the hospital discharges you, you will want to find out some information about your chosen skilled nursing care center to make sure you’re getting the right care you deserve. Here are some questions to ask about the facility to make sure it meets your needs:
- Are there licensed nurses on hand 24 hours a day to monitor changes and guard against relapses?
- Does the staff have the clinical knowledge and experience to care for my condition?
- Are there licensed physicians and nurse practitioners available at the facility?
Three Questions to Ask About Rehabilitation and Therapy
Getting back to your routine after a knee replacement or a fall, for example, may require specific physical therapy equipment to improve your strength and endurance. You want to ensure the short-term care facility has the post-acute therapies you will need to fully recover. Before you transition to a short-term care facility, ask:
- How will rehab work and how will I be able to know if I’m progressing how I should?
- Do they have the best equipment onsite for my condition?
- Are there specialists for one-on-one work and to monitor my progress?
Some rehab may require highly-advanced therapies, such as speech-language therapy to improve thinking, listening, and speaking skills, as well as cognitive disorders. Find a skilled care center that has the specialized staff and will work with your doctors to develop a customized treatment plan focused on your needs for recovery.
Three Questions to Ask Yourself
When choosing short-term skilled nursing care, consider how you will feel because the transition to skilled nursing isn’t always easy. If you have a pre-planned hospital stay, ask if you can pre-book your stay or room. Communicate with the staff to get a feel for how they will communicate with you, your family, and your doctor. Take into consideration these questions:
- Do you get the feeling you and your family could work effectively with the staff?
- Do the professionals understand your and your family’s concerns?
- Are staff members open to sharing information and feedback with you?
Going Home After Recovery: The Importance of Post-Acute Care
While getting back home will always be top of mind, don’t forget to place a high priority on choosing a skilled nursing center to provide you the best possible care after your hospital stay.
Choosing the right provider may be the difference between going home and another trip back to the hospital. Taking action to ease the stress by selecting a skilled nursing care provider you trust is time well spent, and it ensures you get the proper care you need and gets you back home sooner.
About Maine Veterans’ Homes
Maine Veterans’ Homes offers short-term skilled nursing care at its homes in Augusta, Bangor, Caribou, Scarborough, and South Paris. Staff are happy to communicate with you about your needs, and assist in getting the proper paperwork for your stay in order. To learn more, download our free Eligibility Guide >>>