CHICAGO, May 27, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- According to the Center for Disease Control, one out of three older adults, aged 65 or older, falls each year but less than half talk to their healthcare providers about it. As National Safety Month approaches, BrightStar Care, a national home care franchise with more than 260 locations across the country that provide medical and non-medical care to patients from infants to elders, is educating families on how to identify household hazards that can lead to injuries and how to make simple changes in their homes that can decrease the likelihood of their aging loved ones falling victim.
As people age, their risk and fear of falling increases, and, as a result, they tend to self-limit activities and social engagements, which can lead to further physical decline, depression, social isolation, and feelings of helplessness. In addition, when a fall occurs, the average hospital stay is almost twice as long for fall victims than other ailments.
With recent recognition from The Joint Commission for an ongoing commitment to promote high quality health care services, BrightStar Care continues to set itself apart from competitors as a quality-focused care provider.
On the heels of an initiative to educate family caregivers on how to identify a healthcare agency that is held to the highest standards possible, BrightStar Care is helping families make sure each major area of the home is safe for their aging loved one.
In line with providing the higher standard of care that consumers should come to expect, Sharon Roth Maguire, MS, RN, GNP-BC, Chief Clinical Quality Officer of BrightStar Care, offers the following checklist to make each major area of the home safe for seniors:
- Store sharp knives and other utensils in a rack.
- Mark "on" and "off" positions on appliances clearly and with bright colors.
- Switch out food regularly (check expiration dates).
- Ensure that your loved one avoids wearing loose, long-hanging clothing when cooking over the stove.
- Install grab bars next to the toilet and in the tub or shower.
- Use non-slip mats in the bathtub or shower floor.
- Clearly label cold and hot faucets.
- Keep a nightlight illuminated in the room.
- Make sure there is a nightstand next to the bed with a lamp, telephone, clock and additional space for any other important items (such as medications).
- General safety/outside
- Periodically check and change smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
- Front and back doors should have strong, bolted locks and a peephole.
- Stairways should be free of objects and hand rails should be sturdy.
- Garage door is easy to operate
- All extension cords and wires should be out of the path of foot traffic and not plugged in to too many electronics.
While fulfilling the demand of in-home care for the nation's growing aging population continues to be a focus of service for BrightStar Care, the company has carved a niche in the industry that involves a commitment to providing a higher standard of care to all clients with each independently owned and operated location operating under the highest quality standards. BrightStar Care locations nationwide are committed to meeting National Patient Safety Goals around fall prevention. As part of their comprehensive approach to reducing the likelihood of clients experiencing a fall and promoting overall wellness, a BrightStar Care Registered Nurse performs an evaluation of fall risk during initial and subsequent in-home health assessments for every client. Proactive measures to address fall risk are then incorporated into personalized plans of care to promote safety in addition to addressing the specific care needs of each client.
For more information on fall prevention, visit BrightStar Care's "Focus on Falls" page. To find helpful tips, videos, blog articles and downloads geared toward helping families to mobilize around fall prevention, please see the Elderly Fall Resource Center.
For more information about BrightStar Care, please visit www.brightstarcare.com.
About BrightStar Care
Based in Chicago, BrightStar Care is a national private duty home care and medical staffing franchise with more than 260 locations that can provide medical and non-medical services to clients within their homes, as well as supplemental care staff to corporate clients. BrightStar Care Registered Nurse Directors of Nursing create unique, personalized plans of care for each client and oversee professional care teams of well-qualified, experienced caregivers to deliver expert, compassionate, and personal care 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Each BrightStar Care location is required to pursue Joint Commission Accreditation. BrightStar Care received The Joint Commission's Enterprise Champion for Quality award and is committed to having each of its agencies comply with Joint Commission standards. BrightStar Care uses the nationally known patient satisfaction survey company Press Ganey to measure client satisfaction and is proud that nine out of 10 clients would recommend BrightStar Care to a friend or family member. For more information on BrightStar Care please visit brightstarcare.com; to find out more about BrightStar Franchising, visit www.brightstarfranchise.com.
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Source: BrightStar Care