The Challenges of Continuing Care with SNF Patients
Nurses and therapists are facing a range of challenges as they deliver essential care to patients in nursing facilities amid the coronavirus pandemic. The nurses and therapists may not have enough personal protective equipment for their scheduled visits. External staff may also fear the risk of infection and/or transmission of COVID-19. And, some facilities are restricting external staff members from entering the building to treat their patients.
Facilities (e.g., SNFs, ALFs, and LTCFs) must quickly address internal/external staff concerns while keeping their patients safe and maintaining operations. To maintain the safety of a facility’s patients/residents and the providers who care for them, telehealth is recognized as the solution to help visiting nurses and therapists continue “being present” with their patients as much as possible.
How Telehealth Helps Nursing Facilities Provide Safer Care
Telehealth is now more critical than ever for SNFs, ALFs, etc. Synzi’s virtual visit functionality provides facilities with many benefits:
- Staff can quickly access offsite Medical Directors for immediate decisions regarding admissions.
- Visiting nurses and therapists can safely check-in with their patients and ensure they are continuing their treatment and exercise regimen while reducing the risk of infection.
- During the patient’s stay, family caregivers can be included in the virtual visits as they may be restricted from visiting their loved one.
- Post-discharge, internal and external staff can continue to monitor and motivate patients as they minimize infection for all and rehospitalization for the patient.
By providing virtual care, nurses and therapists can continue to stay involved in their patients’ day to day lives and adjust the care (and compassion) to the realities amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Why Telehealth Will Also Be Critical Post-Pandemic
Home health staff are part of the professional caregiver network valued by post-acute care facilities because of their role in providing patients with compassionate, comprehensive care. As communication is a critical element of this partnership, Synzi’s telehealth platform sets the foundation for a robust home health agency / care facility partnership. With any change in the care plan, the visiting nurse or therapist can include other specialists into the video call to discuss the rationale for the change and align on the next steps. This critical communication feature helps agencies support facilities objectives to reduce rehospitalizations, minimize transfers to a higher level of care, and optimize outcomes for all.