Guest Author: Debbie Gitner
I want to thank Next Health for inviting me to share my experience and my client’s experience with the AgileLife system. I am a Geriatric Care Manager and currently work with ElderCare Resource Services.
For the last four years, I have been working with an elderly immobile client who has been able to stay at home as her health condition continued to decline. During our visits she would express to me her desire to stay at home and die in her home as this was imminent based on multiple conditions and her stage of personal health. About six months ago her health changed, which would require one to one help 24/7. This need created an environment where it was unlikely she was going to be able to manage at home much longer. I was attending an eldercare conference and saw the Next Health AgileLife system. Immediately this was the answer I was looking for to keep this client at home.
Since this client has had the AgileLife system at home, she has continued to require only one person for transfers. There was a time that she was developing aspiration pneumonia because she was eating in bed because it was difficult to get her out of bed. Now she is out of bed for all meals and she has not developed aspiration pneumonia for quite awhile.
This bed, the AgileLife system, has the capability to weigh the client allowing me to see how she is doing in regards to weight gain or loss. I am then able to assess her calorie intake and increase or decrease if needed by adding high protein and high caloric foods into her diet.
Repositioning and rotating any immobile individual is important. With the AgileLife system, it is very easy to turn this client in bed from side to side to change her as needed. There is a commode capability with the wheelchair which our client did not utilize, but I can see this as a necessary feature with a few of my other immobile clients.
This bed has reduced the risk of skin breakdowns because my client is being moved either in bed or out of bed. She is not in one position for too long. Next Health also offers various mattresses to both reduce the risk of skin breakdown and helps to reduce pressure ulcers.
Through the course of my management of client, her wishes are able to be honored and she will be able to age in place because of the Next Health AgileLife system.
Geriatric Care Manager
ElderCare Resource Services
Past President of the New England Chapter of Geriatric Care Managers