Food – Feeding America released a study this year titled “The State of Senior Hunger in America” reporting that 5.5 million seniors, age 60+, in the U.S. are food insecure. This number has been rising since 2007 and health professionals are starting to notice.
As a home care agency, training caregivers on how to address and treat food insecurity should be a priority. If you need a good place to get started, AARP has teamed up with the Food Research & Action Center to provide a free one-hour online course to address food insecurities among older adults.
Healthcare System – Your clients may have a negative perception of healthcare from past experiences that could affect their view on healthcare in general. As a home care provider, your team should strive to change the negative perceptions of healthcare by offering exceptional individualized care.
According to NovuHealth, healthcare literacy and familiarity acts as a mediator that leads to certain behaviors and medical illnesses. Seniors that understand and feel comfortable with their healthcare plans often time experience lower stress levels and see improved mental and physical health.
Neighborhood & Physical Environment – As seniors settle into a home for the remainder of their life, they may or may not be familiar with their neighborhood. Dry. Seppala, author of “The Happiness Track” and doctor of the Stanford Center for Compassion and Altruism Research wrote, “People who feel more connected to others have lower levels of anxiety and depression. Moreover, studies show they also have higher self-esteem, greater empathy for others, are more trusting and cooperative and, as a consequence, others are more open to trusting and cooperating with them.”
As your caregivers encourage social interaction and help your clients make friends, you’ll see improved mental, physical, social health and overall happier clients.