Photo: Deborah Crowe
Is home health care the next COVID-19 hot spot? It may very well be, according to home care workers and leaders of a union that represents many of them. In a video press conference on April 15, several home care workers said that neither their agency nor the federal government was doing enough to keep them safe.
Social distancing while performing in-home care is impossible due to the intimate nature of their jobs, said the workers, who provide personal assistance and health care support. Continue reading
As expectations grow that many more cases of COVID-19 coronavirus may be identified in the U.S. in the coming weeks, public health officials have headlined media and congressional briefings to discuss the readiness of the nation’s health system’s to respond to a surge in affected hospital patients.
In general, there is agreement that while the U.S health system is better prepared than 20 years ago, it cannot handle a sudden surge in sick patients, largely because of insufficient staff, clinical space, medical equipment and treatments. Continue reading
Image by Enrique Bosquet via flickr.
Some states are considering social insurance programs to help offset the cost of long-term services and supports (LTSS) care for consumers.
In May, Washington state became the first state to enact legislation that helps finance LTSS for its residents. However, these programs must also strengthen the direct care workforce, according to a new report from PHI, a national research and consulting organization, and Caring Across Generations, a national caregiving advocacy organization. Continue reading
How old is too old to practice medicine? That’s a question without a definitive answer, but one of concern to health systems, patients and clinicians.
Normal age-related physical or cognitive issues don’t mean physicians or nurses should stop practicing by a certain age, but according to this new tip sheet from reporter Cheryl Clark, many doctors are seeing patients, and even performing delicate surgical procedures well into their 80s … or even 90s. On the one hand, these doctors may be the only ones available in rural or lower-income areas; they’re helping alleviate the workforce shortage. On the other hand, there’s concern they could they be putting some patients, or themselves, at risk. Continue reading
Michigan has become the latest state to approve the use of mid-level dental providers — dental therapists — as part of an effort to expand oral health care to communities that have long lacked it.
Outgoing Republican Gov. Rick Snyder signed legislation authorizing the new provider model in late December.
In a statement, Snyder said that dental therapists would serve as “a unique tool to target the currently underserved populations in our state.” Continue reading
Over the past few months, we’ve seen a rash of headlines about workforce shortages in home health care and nursing homes. As we all know by now, the population is aging and studies show most seniors want to age in place.
Realistically, many of them need, or will need, some extra help to do so. And those who can’t live out their lives at home will likely wind up in a nursing home. Time Magazine asked “Who will care for the Baby Boomers?” and called the situation “a growing American crisis. “ Continue reading