Wellness Tip Of the Week; Plan ahead for potential hospitalizations! by Katheryn Howell The time to plan for a hospitalization is before you need to go. The likelihood of a hospitalization is good as we age, even with our best intentions. As a patient or family caregiver, there are several steps you can take to help you be a more informed and effective member of the care team during the transition back home after hospitalization. By knowing what to expect, you may be able to avoid health care complications and even re-hospitalization. You may need help after a hospitalization and that may require anything from help coordinating your aftercare to help getting dressed every day. The help you’ll need may be for a short period of time or may be ongoing. One of the single best planning tips is to identify who your caregiver is and work with them in planning ahead for your potential hospitalization. A campaign of the United Hospital Fund, NextStepInCare has a wealth of information and resources available on topics such as urgent care centers, HIPAA, medication management, discharge planning and home care http://www.nextstepincare.org/Caregiver_Home/ You might take a few moments with the person that you identify as your best potential caregiver and complete the following caregiving self-assessment. http://nextstepincare.org/uploads/File/Guides/Caregiver_Self-Assessment/What_Do_I_Need.pdf If you have questions about planning for a hospitalization, or if you need help contact Wesley Homes Home Health at 206-870-1127 or toll free at 1-866-850-5774.