St. Michael's Home Health

  Quality Care Begins With Quality Nursing 

Your St. Michael’s Home Care Visit Schedule

 

We prefer to provide a time range for our visits, so that all of our patients know when to expect their nurse, therapist, home health aide, medical social worker, and/or equipment delivery driver.  Sometimes, unpredictably, we will not be able to visit you at the pre-arranged time.  Your home care team appreciates your patience and flexibility.

 

     *     Occasionally, the weather or traffic will interfere with travel, OR

     *     Your scheduled home care staff member might be ill and another qualified staff member might visit you, OR

     *     Another patient might be experiencing a change in his or her health that requires a staff person to stay in their home longer than expected. 

 

Please call our office if you have questions or concerns.

    *     Call (504) 322-4525 for St. Michael’s Home Health Agency and ask to speak to a Manager.

Infection Control


Infection Control Tip:  All through the home provide good ventilation; be cautious with pet care; clean up body substances right away. 


    *     The most effective way to prevent the spread of infection is HAND WASHING. 

    *     Caregivers must clean their hands before and after giving care including:  changing bandages, handling soiled linens, giving mouth care. 

    *     Infections can be spread in different ways:  to a patient from a caregiver or other source; to a caregiver from a patient or other source.

    *     Some people are at special risk from infections because their body’s natural defense against illness is weak.  This includes newborns, older

          adults, people with diabetes, HIV or cancer, people using invasive devices (Foley catheters, PICC lines, IV’s, dialysis devices, etc.), and

          caregivers. 

Living Areas 


Safety Tip:  Have a phone accessible, so you don’t have to hurry to answer it, and have emergency numbers by all phones.


    *     Keep walkways free of clutter, cords, and furniture.

    *     Remove throw rugs.

    *     Have good lighting throughout your home.  Use the maximum wattage bulb allowed.

    *     Choose a seat which allows you to sit and stand easily.

    *     If you have a baby in the home, block all stairs with gates.

Bedrooms

 

Infection Control Tip:  Wear gloves if visibly soiled; change linens once a week or when soiled; don’t shake soiled linens. 


Safety Tip:  Avoid using electric blankets or heating pads at night.

Use a nightlight

 

    *     Use a bed rail if it is difficult to get out of bed.

    *     Use a bedside commode to assist with toileting at night.

    *     Have a phone next to the bed.

    *     For babies, the safest place to sleep is in a crib with a firm mattress with a fitted sheet.

Bathrooms

 

Safety Tip:  Install a night light in the bathroom to prevent falls in the dark.

 

Infection Control Tip:  Provide liquid soap and change towels daily; keep tubs, showers and sinks clean; disinfect the toilet; do not share personal items.

 

   *     Use only non-skid mats, non-skid strips or carpet in the bathroom.

   *     Consider a bath bench, transfer bench, hand-held shower, raised toilet seat or grab bars.

   *     Water temperature should be at 120 degrees or lower to prevent burns. 

Fire Precautions

 

Safety Tip:  Change smoke detector batteries two times per year!  A good time to remember is when the clocks change forward and backwards for day light savings time.


Practice fire safety by following these tips:

    *     Have smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors on every floor of your home.

    *     Limit use of portable heaters and extension cords.

    *     Have an escape plan outlined, so you can get out of any room in your house.

    *     Don’t smoke!

    *     Have a fire extinguisher and know how to use it.

Kitchen

 

Safety Tip:  Wash sponges and washcloths frequently to help prevent food poisoning.


Infection Control Tip:  Store food carefully; take care with meat, fish, and eggs; wash fruits and vegetables; keep work surfaces clean; don’t share forks, cups or spoons during meals. 


    *     Mop up any spills or drips on the floor immediately.

    *     Do not use chairs or step-stools to reach high places.

    *     Put frequently used items within reach for adults.

    *     Sit down while doing large kitchen jobs.

    *     Turn off burner/over after use.

    *     Never use stove burners as a heat source.

Medication Safety

 

Safety Tip:  Drink enough fluids to stay hydrated in warm weather and prevent dehydration!


Infection Control Tip:  Contaminated wastes should be disposed of in a plastic bag, closed tightly.  Contaminated “sharps” (needles, razor blades, etc.) should be placed in puncture resistant containers. 


    *     Know what medications you take and why you take them!

    *     Check with physician before taking a new over-the-counter or natural medication (such as vitamins and herbal products).

    *     Keep a current list of all your medications.

    *     Remember to refill your prescriptions before you run out.

    *     Discard all expired or old medications.

Reminders for Medical Appointments

 

Safety Tip:  Keep the temperature of your home comfortable, so you don’t get overheated. 


Infection Control Tip:  Common sign and symptoms of infection:  inflamed or reddened skin, fever or chills, pus, nausea or vomiting, persistent diarrhea, sore throat, cough, or painful urination.


    *     Have your vision and hearing checked regularly.

    *     Get regular checkups from your doctor.

    *     Maintain a regular exercise program as directed.

    *     Bring a current medication list to each appointment, and/or medication bottles in a bag.

    *     Get influenza vaccinations as recommended by your MD each flu season. 

    *     Get pneumococcal vaccinations as recommended by your MD.

Falls are the #1 Cause of Fatal Injury in Adults 65 and Older

 

Safety Tip:  Be sure to wear appropriate footwear when walking outside!


Falls can result in serious injuries and loss of independence.  Everyone has some risk for falling, but especially people:

    *     With poor eyesight or any condition that affects balance or movement.

    *     Who take 5 or more medications, especially sleeping aids or pain medications.

    *     Who have recently been discharged from the hospital or have a history of falls.

 

Tips to Prevent Falls:

    *     Stand up slowly to prevent dizziness.

    *     Change positions slowly.

    *     Wear shoes rather than socks and use a cane, walker or other assistive device.

Respiratory Etiquette

 

Safety Tip:  Be sure to get a flu vaccination every year to protect you and your family against influenza.


    *     Avoid contact with ill individuals.  If you do visit with someone who is ill, try to keep three feet between you and the ill individual when possible.

    *     Stay home when you are sick and check with a health care provider when needed.

    *     Instruct family members to use a tissue to cover their mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing.  The tissue should go directly into the trash.

    *     You should cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing.  IF tissue is not immediately available, use the upper part of your arm. 

    *     Always following with hand hygiene (washing your hand with mild soap and water, or using hand sanitizers and rubbing for 30 seconds).   

Entrance To Your Home

 

Safety Tip:  Make sure electrical and heating systems are in good working order for the summer and winter months.

 

    *     All stairs should have handrails and be in good repair.

    *     If going up and down stairs is difficult, consider having a ramp installed.

    *     Make sure your entrance and exits have good lighting.

    *     Consider having only one good deadbolt lock to ease getting into and out of your home.