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Dementia, Alzheimer’s and Home Health Care

Both Dementia and Alzheimer’s are progressive conditions that can be helped with treatment, but tragically, no cure exists. Often, people use the words Dementia and Alzheimer’s interchangeably, however the two are not the same.

Dementia & Alzheimer’s — What’s the Difference?

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, dementia is a syndrome, an umbrella term used to describe an overall decline in mental ability that is severe enough to interfere with daily life. Alzheimer’s is a disease which falls under this umbrella.

The CDC indicates that Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia, and is a continuous disease beginning with mid-memory loss and has the potential to result in an individual losing the ability to carry on a conversation or respond to stimulation in their everyday environment.

According to this recent report by the Alzheimer’s Association, an estimated 5.4 million Americans are living today with Alzheimer’s disease. Projections suggest that within the next 30 years, the number of people affected by this disease will increase to 13.8 million.

For Agencies Delivering Home Care Services — Proper Insurance is Critical

The predicted increase in the number of individuals that will be stricken with some form of dementia, including those that receive an Alzheimer’s diagnosis is alarming and a public health concern that requires attention, especially for those working within our health care delivery system. As more people requiring home care services face the additional challenges of reduced cognitive function, the result will be a burdening societal issue taxing families, communities and home care providers who are responsible, and liable for their care and safety.

Our clients, companies delivering home care services will experience a dramatic shift in the specific needs and requirements of the home bound patients they are delivering vital, life-saving services to.

Changing Patient Needs — What this Means for Home Care Insurance

The complex needs of patients struggling with dementia or diagnosed with Alzheimer’s brings additional risk and liability for companies delivering home health services. Being responsible for an increasing number of home bound patients that are struggling with dementia or Alzheimer’s will place additional stress on your staff responsible for delivering necessary home care services.

Higher numbers of your patients will become confused, frightened and at times, agitated, placing your employees at risk. They may not recognize their regularly scheduled caregiver. How the additional toll on your staff is taken into consideration and addressed, will be critical to reducing staff burnout and turnover at your home health agency.

There is increased risk that a higher number of patients could wander away from home or injure themselves — and there is the possibility that your home care company could be held liable. Does your home health agency have the appropriate amount of insurance for this situation?

MPL Risk — Helping with Loss Prevention & Control

While we will never claim to know the home health care industry better than our clients, we understand and appreciate the predictions made by the Alzheimer’s Association and our goal is to help our clients prepare for the future of their business and reduce their liability. At MPL Risk, our dedicated staff will assist those who bear the responsibility (and liability), for delivering home care services adapt to a rapidly changing business environment. Call us today. We are here to help.