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The Flu Shot Now Might Help Reduce Hospital Readmission Rates in the Future

Reducing Hospital Readmission Rates in Jenkintown, PA

Reducing-Hospital-Readmission-RatesIt’s that time of year again. No, not just the holiday season that is brushing up upon us again, but flu season. Most doctors and pharmacies begin recommending seniors get the flu shot now. While the flu may not be at epidemic levels until winter rolls in, it can actually have an impact on an elderly individual’s recovery at home from certain ailments, including a heart attack, stroke, pneumonia, and other physical emergencies.

By waiting too long to get the flu shot, it increases the chances the senior may not be able to get it in the event there is a medical emergency. For example, consider a senior who suffered a heart attack and was sent to the hospital. What they nor their families may be considering is finding ways to reduce hospital readmission rates, as the main goal is to get them back to full health as quickly as possible.

How do you go about doing that?

First, you follow doctor’s orders. There should be various instructions the doctor and/or hospital sent home with the elderly individual to make sure they maximize the chances of a full recovery.

Second, the senior needs to protect his or her health, especially since their immune system is likely compromised. If they are exposed to the flu virus and didn’t get the flu vaccine, it increases the chances of coming down with the flu by more than 50%. If they get the flu while recovering from a heart attack it can cause them to not be able to exercise, not follow those doctors’ instructions as well as they could or should, and reduces the chances of making the proper type of recovery.

Does this mean they won’t make a recovery?

No, but whenever a senior’s immune system is compromised it increases the chances of other complications that could ultimately lead to another hospitalization.

Being proactive means thinking ahead and trying to minimize certain complications or other risk factors. When it comes to the flu and flu season, there’s really no reason somebody should avoid the flu vaccine, especially when they are over the age of 65 and are at an increased risk.

So even though the senior may be completely healthy right now and there’s no indication they will need to be hospitalized for any reason this winter, that flu vaccine now can actually help reduce potential hospital readmission rates in the future. That will increase the chances of them making a full recovery.

If you or an aging loved one are considering home care in Jenkintown, PA, contact the caring professionls at Right at Home of East Montgomery and South Bucks County at 215-995-2674.

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