Since 1963, May has been designated Older Americans Month, an annual recognition of the accomplishments of those 65 and over. And one of the biggest accomplishments of the nation’s elders has been their staying power! When the tribute was first proclaimed, the average life expectancy in the United States was just under 70; today, it’s nearly 80.
What are we doing with those extra 10 years? Well, thanks to major advances in medicine, many older citizens are continuing to lead healthy, active lives well into their later decades.
And as people age, many discover what’s most important in life is also most often intangible—the comforts of home, the companionship of friends and family, a pet’s unconditional love, and the good health to maintain independence.
In fact, a 2018 AARP survey found that three out of four adults over age 50 want to stay in their homes and communities as they age. Moreover, there are clear advantages to aging in place: It benefits physical and emotional health, keeps a social support network intact, and even costs less than the alternatives.
At Capital Caring Health, we understand what older Americans want and hope for. And through new programs and services, we’re taking the lead to help more and more area seniors remain healthy and in their homes, as long as possible.
Primary Care at Home
Launched in January 2020, Primary Care at Home (PCH) helps elders age in place with dignity. Developed by Eric De Jonge, M.D., Capital Caring Health’s Chief of Geriatrics, the program provides direct care and support to those with advanced illness and their families, right where the patient lives.
Designed to provide peace of mind for both patients and families, PCH features a dedicated care team that handles all health care needs, including complex care, medication management, daily support services and transitions between different care settings. By keeping chronic conditions under control, we help you avoid unnecessary 911 calls and hospitalizations.
- House Calls: In the midst of the current pandemic, what could be more timely and valuable than seeing a doctor in your home? If you’re older and have a chronic illness, you are more vulnerable to COVID-19, which makes staying at home a safer path.
Through PCH, our physicians, nurse practitioners, and social workers—all specialists in the care of older adults with advanced illness—come to you, providing the medical care and social support you need, right in your own home. These days, all our providers are outfitted with PPE (personal protection equipment) to safeguard patients, families, and themselves. To provide easy access to medical care and increase safety, we also can offer new televideo service to see patients remotely when needed.
- Advanced Mobile Technology: We can do in-home testing including blood work, X-rays, ultrasound, and more. We’ve also created an electronic computer portal so you or your loved ones can communicate with our team.
- Coordinated Care, 24/7: The PCH medical team is available by phone 24/7 for urgent concerns. We also work with other specialists, to ensure that patients receive all the care they need, no matter the setting.
- Family-Centered Care: We work closely with families to ensure that everyone understands the plan of care and is up to date on any changes. We also provide education and training to family caregivers on specific health conditions, nutrition, and equipment.
- No Costs to You or Your Family: PCH is designed to provide access to needed care for all seniors in our communities, regardless of income. To do so, PCH accepts and bills Medicare, Medicaid and other insurance for our services. There are no fees to join the program. Standard co-payments do apply.
To be eligible for Primary Care at Home, you must:
- Be age 65 years or older
- Require some assistance getting to the doctor’s office
- Have a chronic illness or disability
- Live within specified zip codes in NW D.C./Chevy Chase, MD or Northern Virginia
- Transfer primary care responsibility to the PCH team
For more information, visit https://www.capitalcaring.org/get-help/our-services/primary-care-at-home/
Beyond maintaining health, aging in place requires contending with daily life, such as preparing meals, housekeeping, and home maintenance. Yet the ability to do these necessary tasks may be affected by chronic health issues or impaired mobility. And many older individuals often don’t want to burden adult children or other family members by asking for assistance.
Capital Caring Health’s new Stay-at-Home Services, launching in June 2020, is a personalized, one-stop shop for scheduling and managing a broad range of care and support to help you remain independent and in your home. A CCH Care Coach will work with each program member, help put together a custom program and make weekly care calls. Depending upon an individual’s specific needs, the program will arrange for different types of assistance, such as:
- Home meal delivery
- Home modifications and upkeep
- Appointment management
- Senior friendly telehealth tablets
- Pet care and more
More details will be available on our website soon including information about the monthly fee schedule for our new Stay-At-Home services.
Aging Well with Capital Caring Health
With careful planning, older Americans and their families can make the practical decisions necessary to extend time at home, in comfort and with peace of mind. Call our 24-Hour Care Line at 800-869-2136 today to see how we can help!