A campaign to support older people to remain in their own homes is getting started at Southern DHB.
‘Home as my First Choice’ will raise awareness of support options when an older person wants to either stay at home, or return home from hospital.
“Many older people are telling us that for them, being in their own homes is their first choice. Sometimes they encounter health services - after a fall, for example - and the wheels are set in motion to move them into residential care. Sometimes that’s the right option, but at other times it may not be the right move. It is amazing what solutions can be found if all of us – health professionals, the older person themselves and their families/whānau - ask ‘how can we support you to stay at home?’” says Southern DHB Director Allied Health; Strategy, Primary and Community, Andrew Metcalfe.
“Going home or remaining at home won’t be possible in all situations, but we want to explore every way that we can help make this happen. We see older people as being important partners in this, along with their families/whānau and others.”
Primary Care, Home Support, Clinical Needs Assessors and other Health Professionals play a vital role in this campaign. This wider team can support a restorative approach that helps people to be independent, care for themselves and continue to participate within their families/whānau and communities.
Information and resources including leaflets and posters are available to encourage patient, their families/whānau and staff to talk more about the option of returning or remaining at home with support.
The ‘Home as my First Choice’ campaign ties in with other initiatives to support older people to return home, and stay well at home including the ‘Sit up, Get Dressed, Keep Moving,’ initiative and the Live Stronger for Longer programme.
To older people Andrew has a clear message. “If ‘home is your first choice’ whether you’re at home or in hospital, there are supports the DHB can put in place to make this happen. Talk to a health professional (your GP, a nurse, doctor or allied health team member) who can put you in touch with the right person to explore how ‘home can be your first choice.’”