HOME CARE & HOSPICE WORKERS CAN MAKE A REAL DIFFERENCE IN CARING FOR SENIORS:
CAN $17.97 A DAY CHANGE A LIFE?

(Las Vegas, NV – Sept. 27, 2011)  When 65-year old Sarah Myers was discharged from Knoxville’s Fort Sanders Parkwest Hospital after suffering a minor stroke, she was heading home to an empty house.  Yes, a nurse would call to check on her medications, but when it came to eating, the cupboard was bare.Thanks to a thoughtful case manager at her insurance company who asked about her nutritional needs, Myers admitted she had nothing to eat, did not know what she should be eating, no way to get to a store, and no one to cook for her.  The case manager, clearly understanding the importance of good nutrition in the healing process, suggested home meal delivery, which would ensure a week or more of fresh, healthy meals waiting for her in her refrigerator.  And that one suggestion changed a life.A simple suggestion.  An easy remedy.  And a possible costly hospital readmission avoided.

When the 2011 National Association for Home Care & Hospice 30th Annual Meeting & Exposition opens in Las Vegas on October 1, thousands of attendees will talk about the daunting challenges in caring for the country’s booming aging population, especially in light of today’s ongoing budget cuts.

Nutrition, often taken for granted, is a key component in the healing process.

Yet home care and hospice workers may not even be aware of the startling statistics, or options to combat those numbers.   For instance, up to 53% of America’s senior citizens are malnourished when admitted to the hospital. And when discharged, they may still be undernourished, and even weaker as a result of their primary health issue.

Estimates also show up to 44% of the homebound elderly population becomes malnourished, the result of an unbalanced diet lacking essential nutrients.

“This undernourished population is more likely to be hospitalized, and once hospitalized, have a longer length of stay, poorer health outcomes, and a higher likelihood of readmission than those not suffering from malnutrition,” said Dr. Samuel Beattie, PhD, Director of Technical Services for Mom’s Meals, a company which delivers nutritionally balanced meals to seniors.

Because nutritional status is considered one of the most significant predictors of hospital readmission, patient outcomes are often significantly impacted by poor nutrition. Unfortunately, care transition plans (the patient care plan from hospital to home) often fail to address the importance of providing quality nutrition solutions that can be easily followed and available to patients post-discharge.

“Proper nutrition, especially in the elderly, is the key to extending life, enabling independence for a longer period of time, and avoiding costly medical intervention for a variety of ailments which would be exacerbated by this serious condition,” said Beattie.

“Good nutrition, often taken for granted when we’re healthy and mobile, can be a major challenge for a senior living alone – healthy or not,” said Mary Mahoney, MS, RD, LD of Mom’s Meals.  “If you’re just home from the hospital and still too sick to care for yourself, or if you have limited mobility from surgery or a health crisis, the role of a well-balanced diet is crucial.”

“Thanks to the suggestion of the case manager, for $17.97 per day I had complete peace of mind,” said Myers.  “I spoke with someone at Mom’s Meals on the phone, chose the meals I wanted, and they were delivered right to the door.  It was one less thing to worry about.  And, they taste great, too.”

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About Mom’s Meals Mom’s Meals is a family-owned, USDA inspected and approved fresh food preparation and delivery service, is dedicated to providing fresh meals to customers nationwide.  The company prepares, packages, and ships ready-to-heat and eat meals directly to a customer’s door, delivered by FedEx or UPS anywhere in the United States, and the meals stay fresh in a refrigerator for 14 days.  Customers may choose their own meals from a rotating menu of over 70 choices.

Mom’s Meals offers a variety of meals that meet the requirements of low sodium, low fat, and low carbohydrate recommendations that a physician might suggest.  Customers may customize their own menu of 10, 14, or 21 fresh-prepared meals from a menu of over 50 different options, and meals are delivered in ready-to-heat and eat packages that stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 14 days.

 

Media Contact: Deborah L. Albert 215.283.6006 (o) 215.421-1231 (m) debbie@albertcommunications.com