Weekly Pulse for April 18, 2022

Home Health
(Therapy)
Start Date
Hospice
(Nursing)
Start Date
Clarkston4/184/18
Lewiston4/184/18
Moscow4/194/18
Orofino4/204/18
***Start Dates are contingent on receiving a complete referral***

Clinical Focus

April is an opportunity to introduce areas of focus that Elite is proud to partner with and support in our communities. This week, we are highlighting National Donate Life Month. Donation of organs, such as heart, lungs, kidneys, liver, intestines and pancreas are known and familiar. Donations of tissue, including birth tissue, and the eye, including the cornea, reflect some unique donation types. The amazing gifts of life that these donations bring allow their recipients to re-engage in life activities and pursue healthy living. Elite Home Health & Hospice partners with recipients who benefit from additional support and intervention after surgery and the return home. Many of our patients benefit from medication review and teaching to learn the role of each new prescription, build in regimens to aid in consistency of administration, and identify side effects and obstacles to their care. The supports of skilled nursing and rehabilitation aid patients in their return to independent living. Our dietitian supports medically driven diet changes to guide patients through their new normal. Consider Home Health as part of the treatment plan.

Question Corner

What payors are accepted on palliative care?

As many of you know, Elite launched our palliative care program on April 1st. We are currently only able to serve Idaho patients that are using traditional Medicare. We are pursuing Idaho Medicaid, and we anticipate this will be available in May. Managed Medicare plans in Idaho are projected for June. This includes any plan managed by an insurance company. Washington residents with traditional Medicare are projected for mid-May, and Washington Medicaid is projected for late June. Managed Medicare in Washington is not expected until late July.

We appreciate the excitement and recognize the need for the program. We are hopeful that we will be able to serve the community in a full capacity by the end of summer. If you have questions, reach out to us at info@EliteHHH.com  

People to know

Clarkston Liaison/Lifeline – Angie (509) 780-8097

Lewiston Liaison – Beth (509) 254-1381

Moscow & Orofino Liaison – Scott (509) 234-3102

Business Development – Ashley (509) 843-7605

April is Testicular Cancer Awareness Month

Testicular cancer is one of the most treatable cancers according to the American Cancer Society (cancer.org). This is a unique opportunity to shift our focus to men in a different age bracket than we typically serve. These men are between the ages of 20 – 35 and are typically Caucasian. Survival rates are at 95% over 5 years. The greatest challenge with diagnosing testicular cancer is often related to social stigma and delaying assessment. The disease itself is when cancer cells grow in the testicles, the male reproductive organ. These organs are found in the scrotum where sperm and testosterone are produced. Men may experience infertility and variations in the hormone production of testosterone that may lead to seeking medical attention. A lump may be present and is often painful which may also lead to seeking medical attention. Routine physicals are critical in early identification as well as routine self-assessment.

There are two forms of testicular cancer: non-seminomas and seminomas. The non-seminoma type grow and spread more quickly. The seminoma type tends to be more responsive to radiation and treatments. Patients may experience pain in their lower back, being short of breath, possibly having a cough, belly pain and recurrent headaches. Treatment plans often work to address these symptoms.

Home health services may be a resource to support rehabilitation after initial treatments and aid the patient in returning to meaningful activities of daily living, including accessing occupational therapy for returning to social and sexual health. Physical and occupational therapy may also be resources for rehabilitating elements of mobility and self-care that may have changed as a result of radiation or surgical intervention. Finally, accessing a social worker may support the mental health and management of stigma men experience with this disease.

Though rare, access to palliative services or hospice care may become a resource if the cancer has progressed to a terminal illness. Our role in this instance is to support the patient and their family in end-of-life decision-making and optimizing life despite the disease.

Weekly Pulse for April 11, 2022

Home Health
(Therapy)
Start Date
Hospice
(Nursing)
Start Date
Clarkston4/114/11
Lewiston4/114/11
Moscow4/124/11
Orofino4/134/11
***Start Dates are contingent on receiving a complete referral***

Clinical Focus

April is an opportunity to introduce areas of focus that Elite is proud to partner with and support in our communities. This week, we are highlighting Testicular Cancer Awareness Month.

Testicular cancer tends to impact the lives of younger men, usually between the ages of 20—35. Through treatment, men are often able to recover in a timely manner. Home health services are often not needed due to this recovery. However, what testicular cancer allows us to focus on is men’s health.

Cultural and social stigmas often limit outreach to men in a meaningful way to create collaborative interventions for addressing common issues. Regular visits with a primary care physician allow for providers to identify needs early in the disease process and engage resources, such as home health, for prevention and management. Co-morbid conditions are identified earlier in male patients with established relationships with a PCP. Early intervention reduces complications later in life and creates systems for health management before disease complexities rise. If you would like more information on testicular cancer and men’s health, check out https://www.testicularcancerawarenessfoundation.org/

Question Corner

What happens if I send a Home Health referral, but the patient should be on Hospice?

We are here to provide the right service to the right patient.

Home health is designed to support recovery and improvement. Patients referred without these 2 things are not appropriate and may not be admitted onto services. The ultimate cost is that the right service will not be provided in a timely fashion.

Our role when this happens is to coordinate for the right referral. This sometimes creates confusion for the patient and may delay care.

The best strategy is to identify a patient’s rehabilitative prognosis. If there is potential, refer to Home Health.

If you are questioning the patient’s capacity for improvement, ask for a Hospice Informational. We are here to help! 

People to know

Clarkston Liaison/Lifeline – Angie (509) 780-8097

Lewiston Liaison – Beth (509) 254-1381

Moscow & Orofino Liaison – Scott (509) 234-3102

Business Development – Ashley (509) 843-7605

April is National Oral Cancer Awareness Month

Mouth and throat cancers are complex. They are often not viewed as critical, but consider that these forms of cancer take the lives of at least 24 people daily. The longevity of these conditions is about 60% for 5 years. Frequently, these people are living with physical disfigurement, difficulties eating and speaking, and social stigma. The death rate is high in this form of cancer due to being found late in the progress of the disease. A critical piece of prevention is accessing regular dental visits. Dentistry is uniquely skilled to review structures in the mouth and identify abnormalities. The care team that is involved once oral cancer is identified usually adds professionals in oncology, otolaryngology, and oral surgery.

Home health services are critical in the management of oral and pharyngeal cancer. Skilled nursing and speech language pathology services are frequently ordered to support management of recovery after chemotherapy and radiation. Therapy services often address changes to the eating patterns and unique speaking needs that result from physical changes to the mouth and throat. The patient and family often benefit from occupational therapy services to aid in supporting a return to independent living in the home, and social worker services support the psychosocial changes a person may experience after medical interventions that result in physical and image changes. These services are critical for the patient to return to meaningful daily living.

Palliative services may be provided along with home health while the patient is still pursuing curative treatments. The role of the nurse practitioner and medical assistant are to support the patient in navigating a vast healthcare system. They work with the patient to identify changes in wants and needs in the disease progression.

Hospice services are often brought in during the last 6 months of life to support the patient and family. Services at this phase often support the critical decisions made at the end of life. Skilled nursing, social work, chaplain services, and home health aides are critical members of this team. They guide and direct the care to make meaningful living a priority.

If you would like more information on oral cancers, check out oralcancerfoundation.org and aaoms.org

Weekly Pulse for April 4, 2022

Home Health
(Therapy)
Start Date
Hospice
(Nursing)
Start Date
Clarkston4/54/4
Lewiston4/54/4
Moscow4/74/4
Orofino4/74/4
***Start Dates are contingent on receiving a complete referral***

Clinical Focus

April is an opportunity to introduce areas of focus that Elite is proud to partner with and support in a meaningful manner. This week, we are highlighting oral cancer awareness.

April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month.

Oral cancer refers to cancer involving the oral cavity, pharyngeal cavity, and related structures, i.e., tongue, pharynx, larynx, etc. Many of these cancers can be detected early by a dentist who may note abnormalities of the surrounding tissues. Otolaryngologists (aka. ENTs) and oncologists are members of the clinical team that creates the treatment plan. 

Home health therapy may become an option after chemotherapy, radiation, and/or surgery. Professionals in skilled nursing, speech language pathology, and registered dietitians are critical members of an interdisciplinary team that supports a patient’s recovery and optimal health. Additionally, the trauma of disfigurement and head/neck physical changes often benefit from the skilled support of social workers. Patients often experience intermittent use of PEG/J tube feedings and find extra support helpful for navigating their home safely. Physical and occupational therapists are critical in establishing new regimens.

Consider home health as part of a comprehensive treatment plan.

Question Corner

What disciplines are available in Home Health?

Home Health includes services from Skilled Nursing, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Speech-Language Pathology, Social Work, Registered Dietitian, and Home Health Aides.

If you have questions about Elite’s Home Health services, send us an email at info@EliteHHH.com  

People to know

Clarkston Liaison – Angie (509) 780-8097

Lewiston Liaison – Beth (509) 254-1381

Moscow & Orofino Liaison – Scott (509) 234-3102

Business Development – Ashley (509) 843-7605

What is the role of Palliative in Chronic Kidney Disease?

“End stage renal disease is a progressive, debilitating, chronic illness requiring nursing and medical interventions. The development of the disease affects quality of life, potentially influencing physical and mental health, functional status, independence, general well-being, personal relationships and social functioning.” (Cleary et al., 2005)

Chronic kidney disease is a complex chronic condition. Given the complexities of other comorbidities, close monitoring and mitigation of symptoms related to the interplay of other chronic conditions and managing multiple medications is a complicated process. Our goal in palliative is to support the patient’s quality of life as an integrated approach. Sharing information with the primary provider to support symptoms is measured by the patient’s self-rating of quality of life. Patients in palliative are still pursuing curative treatments, and they are engaging in meaningful activities in spite of having progressive conditions.

What is the role of Hospice in Chronic Kidney Disease?

“End stage renal disease is a progressive, debilitating, chronic illness requiring nursing and medical interventions. The development of the disease affects quality of life, potentially influencing physical and mental health, functional status, independence, general well-being, personal relationships and social functioning.” (Cleary et al., 2005)

Kidney disease involves complex care management for multiple systems. The role of hospice is meant as a support for the patient and their family as they approach end-of-life. Identifying components that meet the patient’s desired quality of life and creating plans to support these desires is the primary purpose of an interdisciplinary team. The care team is comprised of nursing, social work, and chaplains. We also provide bath aide support and massage therapy for creating comfort and non-pharmacological methods of pain reduction. Because of our unique status as a home health and hospice agency, we also can provide consultation from physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech-language pathology, and medical dietitian.

Weekly Pulse for March 21, 2022

Home Health
(Therapy)
Start Date
Hospice
(Nursing)
Start Date
Clarkston3/223/21
Lewiston3/223/21
Moscow3/233/21
Orofino3/233/21
***Start Dates are contingent on receiving a complete referral***

Clinical Focus

Elite Home Health & Hospice is expanding. We are launching Palliative services in Idaho for Medicare patients on April 1st!!

Palliative services are a medical specialty service that are aimed at supporting the management of chronic illness to reduce pain and stress. Palliative professionals are uniquely trained to provide Medicare’s chronic care management services and support patient’s in defining interventions at various phases of their disease process.

Palliative services allow us to uniquely partner with local PCPs to coordinate multiple specialists and their interventions. Effective palliation should reduce hospitalizations and emergency room visits.

Question Corner

Can’t I just provide palliative services for my patients?

Maybe.

The term “palliative care” is frequently used by medical professionals to address pain management and comfort in end-of-life. This use is an over-simplification of palliative services and frankly hospice services. True palliative care is directed to support the physical, psychological, social, spiritual, and emotional well-being of the patient. Palliative services are never offered as a single provider but rather a multidisciplinary team.

Palliative services aid the patient in making decisions about the levels of intervention in their disease course. Palliative services support the patient and family in identifying needs at the various phases to support meeting their wishes for disease process management and end-of-life care. Similar to hospice, the services related to emotional and spiritual support are often provided by professionals in social work and chaplaincy.

If you have questions about Elite’s palliative program, send us an email at info@EliteHHH.com  

People to know

Clarkston Liaison – Angie (contact information coming soon)

Lewiston Liaison – Beth (509) 254-1381

Moscow & Orofino Liaison – Scott (509) 234-3102

Business Development – Ashley (509) 843-7605

What is the role of Home Health in Chronic Kidney Disease?

“End stage renal disease is a progressive, debilitating, chronic illness requiring nursing and medical interventions. The development of the disease affects quality of life, potentially influencing physical and mental health, functional status, independence, general well-being, personal relationships and social functioning.” (Cleary et al., 2005)

Kidney disease involves complex care management for multiple systems. The role of home health is to support patients understanding their disease process. The role of nursing guides patients through setting up health care regiments to effectively manage their disease and pull in specialists from other disciplines to address changing levels of function. Access to physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech-language pathology, medical dietitian, and social work are integral to an evolving disease process.

Weekly Pulse for March 14, 2022

Home Health (Therapy) Start DateHospice (Nursing) Start Date
Clarkston3/143/14
Lewiston3/143/14
Moscow3/163/15
Orofino3/163/15
***Start Dates are contingent on receiving a complete referral***

Clinical Focus

March is Kidney Disease Awareness Month!

Early diagnosis is critical in creating a comprehensive treatment plan for kidney disease. Individuals with diabetes and hypertension are at especially high risk.

We assess comorbidities to identify risk factors and create plans to reduce rehospitalization risks and support interventions that maintain health by proactively triaging new symptoms to support immediate interventions. We also offer 24-hour telephone nursing supports for urgent needs.

These measures have allowed us to provide one of the lowest re-hospitalization rates to our patients in all of our service areas. 

Question Corner

What makes Elite’s hospice services different from others?

Your care team at Elite creates a customized care plan for our patients. While Medicare standards dictate visits every 2 weeks by the nursing professional, Elite creates treatment plans that address the patient and family needs. This often means a weekly visit or more.

This personalized care plan means increased visit frequencies to support creating a comprehensive comfort strategy. Nursing aide visits to provide personal care for comfort and quality of life. Chaplain and social worker visits to address the patient and family holistically and beyond their physical needs. Access to therapy professionals with specialized training in hospice support the team to create comfort and optimize end-of-life care for basic needs, like being comfortable in bed, eating a meal, and engaging in massage for pain management.

If you have questions about what makes Elite different, send us an email at info@EliteHHH.com  

People to know

Clarkston Liaison – coming soon

Lewiston Liaison – Beth (509) 254-1381

Moscow & Orofino Liaison – Scott (509) 234-3102

Business Development – Ashley (509) 843-7605