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How Healthcare at Home can benefit Parkinson’s disease patients

Scientific research provides evidence that delivering at-home care would make Parkinson’s disease care more patient-centred and deliver enhanced quality of life

Parkinson’s disease is a chronic and progressive neurological disorder that affects millions of individuals worldwide. According to the Shake It Up Australia Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, around 200,000 Aussies have the disease, with 38 people diagnosed with it every single day.

The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (which partners with Shake It Up) has raised over $3 billion in research programs, with the goal of eliminating Parkinson’s disease. Currently, there is no cure, but there are numerous treatment options available to manage its symptoms and improve quality of life.

One such option pioneered by Vitalis Health is healthcare at home. This approach brings medical services and support directly to patients’ doorsteps. There is growing scientific evidence suggesting that moving Parkinson’s care to the home will benefit patients. This table, for example, highlights how home-based care is able to deliver more patient-centred care than the current care models operating in the US and UK.

Home-based care delivers more patient-centred care for Parkinson's disease patients

In this article, we explore the documented evidence of how healthcare at home benefits individuals living with Parkinson’s disease.

Benefit 1: Improved access to care

Access to specialised care is essential for individuals with Parkinson’s disease so they can effectively manage their condition. However, factors such as mobility limitations and geographical distance can hinder access to traditional healthcare facilities.

Not only does home-based care eliminate those barriers, but new evidence suggests it is actually far more beneficial for people with Parkinson’s. According to a UK study published in the Journal of Parkinson’s Disease, healthcare at home has been shown to improve access to care for Parkinson’s patients, with 85% reporting increased satisfaction with access to medical services.

The care provided at home can vary. For example, Vitalis can provide nurses and physio’s trained in improving motor symptoms and overall quality of life, in addition to regular check-ups, medication management and therapy sessions. Receiving this care in the comfort of one’s own home can also reduce the stress and discomfort associated with traditional healthcare visits.

Benefit 2: Reduced hospitalisations

Parkinson’s disease is associated with a high risk of hospitalisations due to complications such as falls, medication-related issues, and infections. However, a submission by Parkinson’s Australia to the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Aged Care Services states that “access to specialist nursing care and therapy services would reduce hospital inpatient admissions by 50% and hospital outpatient attendance by 40%”.

Healthcare at home allows for the development of personalised care plans and a comprehensive care strategy tailored to each patient’s specific needs and preferences. Across all Vitalis Complex Care in the Home services (which delivers personalised care for multiple conditions, including Parkinson’s disease), the readmission rate is just 0.2%.

Benefit 3: Better symptom management

Symptom management is a cornerstone of quality Parkinson’s care. Because Parkinson’s symptoms can fluctuate throughout the day, real-time monitoring and support is crucial. Healthcare at home (working in tandem with virtual solutions) delivers that closeness and quality of oversight to closely track changes in symptoms, medication effectiveness, and overall health status. This proactive approach allows for timely interventions and adjustments to treatment plans, ultimately improving symptom control and minimizing complications.

Benefit 4: Empowerment through education

Understanding Parkinson’s disease and learning self-management strategies are essential for empowering patients to take control of their health. Healthcare at home provides ample opportunities for education and training. Vitalis places particular emphasis on this as part of delivering a top-quality patient experience.

Vitalis’ skilled, passionate and caring clinicians offer guidance on medication adherence, exercise routines, fall prevention, and symptom management techniques. By equipping patients and their caregivers with knowledge and skills, healthcare at home promotes independence and enhances confidence in managing Parkinson’s on a day-to-day basis.

Benefit 5: Enhanced quality of life

By combining comfort, personalised care, continuous monitoring, and education, healthcare at home ultimately contributes to an enhanced quality of life for individuals with Parkinson’s disease. Patients can maintain their independence, stay connected with their communities, and enjoy meaningful activities while receiving the support they need to manage their condition effectively. Furthermore, by reducing the need for frequent hospital visits and emergency room admissions, healthcare at home helps reduce the stress associated with chronic illness.

Conclusion

There is clear evidence that “moving care to the patient’s home would make Parkinson’s disease care more patient-centred.” By bringing medical services and support directly to patients’ homes, healthcare at home empowers individuals with Parkinson’s to lead fulfilling and dignified lives while effectively managing their condition.

Vitalis can provide top-quality home-based care for private pay patients with Parkinson’s disease, as well as through aged care and NDIS funding. Please CONTACT US to learn more.

Vitalis - Quality Healthcare at Home

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