Long Term Care, also called Long Term Acute Care, Long Term Medical Care, or Transitional care, is a term applied to the care of patients that suffer from multiple medical conditions that require them to be treated in a hospital setting for long periods, 25 days or more.
This form of medical care applies to patients with chronic illnesses, elderly patients, and those with mental or physical disability. Home care for such patients is impractical and extremely strenuous for the family.
Most of our patients are in transition from an ICU setting to a home setting. They are transferred from a traditional hospital ICU because they do not require the intensive investigations or invasive monitoring any longer. In these situations, Long Term Care provides a more economic and cost effective alternative.
Which patients are suited for Long Term Care?
Long Term Care is suitable for the following categories of patients
In particular, elderly patients with cardiac, pulmonary, neurological or multi-organ disease which limits their mobility. Such patients require constant care with feeding and personal hygiene, as well as careful administration and coordination of medical treatment.
Patients recovering from orthopedic procedures or fractures
Elderly patients often suffer from hip fractures (fracture neck of femur, or intertrochanteric fracture femur). These require surgery followed by a long period of physiotherapy and mobilization. This is a dangerous period for elderly patients as the period of immobility often triggers multiple medical problems and a deterioration of general health. Such Elderly patients can be cared for in a long term care facility until they are well enough to go home.
Patients recovering from stroke
Stroke patients require ICU care for the first 2-7 days. Once the stage of intensive treatment and investigations is over, they can be cared for in a Long Term Care facility, until they are sufficiently recovered to be taken home.
Patients with Advanced Cancer
Cancer patients require prolonged hospitalization for pain relief, intravenous (IV) drug treatment, nutrition, and general medical and nursing care.
Patients with dementia, paralysis, or psychological problems
Patients with Alzheimer ’s disease, Senile Dementia, or other forms of mental illness require full time nursing care. In most cases, this can be provided at home, with installation of hospital beds, modification of toilets, full time nursing and attendant care, and frequent doctor visits. In cases where the family elects that the patient is better cared for in the hospital, we are able to provide comprehensive care for such patients.
What services are provided in the Long Term Care facility?
We provide all the facilities that can be found in a typical hospital, including 24-hour physician support, Nursing Care, Path Lab, Radio-diagnostics including X-ray and ultrasound, Pulmonary Function Tests, Physiotherapy, ECHO cardiogram, ECG, etc.
We have specialists in every field visiting our hospital on a daily basis, including Cardiology, Neurology, Orthopedics, Gastroenterology, and all other clinical specialties.
In addition, we provide specialized services in Geriatric Medicine, led by Dr. O.P. Sharma, an authority in Care of the Elderly and president of the Indian Geriatric Society.
What are the advantages over Hospital Care?
Most of our patients have spent 3-10 days in an ICU setting before being transferred to us. ICU care usually costs approximately Rs. 20,000 per day. Also, ICU level care is usually unnecessary once the condition of the patient is stable. Once this stage is reached, the patient no longer required extensive investigations or aggressive surgical treatment. However, the patient may still require weeks to months of admission in a hospital.
In this situation we offer an alternative format for treatment which is much more personal, more individualized to the specific problems of the patient, and yet more economical than hospital treatment.
What are the advantages over Home Care?
As providers of Home Health Care, we understand the advantages and limitations of home based care.
For most of our long term care patients, treatment at home may be possible but is impractical. Home treatment would require installation of equipment such as a multi-position hospital bed, air mattress, DVT pump, oxygen cylinder, suction machine, IV stand, infusion pump, pulse oxymeter, etc.
Care at home would also require dedicated 24 hour nursing care. In addition, at least one attendant is required to periodically turn the patient in bed, help take the patient to the bathroom, etc.
Some patients also require special feeding, e.g. through nasogastric tube, which requires dietician and specialist nurse supervision.
Specialist doctors may be required to visit the patient on a regular basis. This may not be possible at home due to the limited availability of specialists.
In addition, the patient may experience acute episodes in which their condition worsens. In these situations, acute care or resuscitation may be required. The home setting may not be adequate to manage such situations.
Finally, in some situations, home care may be possible but may cause an excessive physical and psychological burden on the family. Also, there may be occasions when the family needs to travel, e.g. for family functions, vacation etc.. A Long Term Care facility can be utilized to tide over such periods.
Does it cost more than traditional hospital care?
On the contrary, our charges are much lower than those incurred in a traditional hospital setting. Most patients require a single room, which at our facility ranges from Rs 3,500 to Rs. 6,000 per night. For patients requiring extended care, palliative care hospital offer special weekly and monthly rates. Costs vary depending on the condition of the patient and the intensity of the care required.
Please contact us for a free consultation on whether our facility may be right for your patient, and for an estimate of the charges. Our Palliative care centre Delhi have it all.