Home Health Services for the LGBT Community

In All About Home Care, Senior Issues, Uncategorized by webadmin

There are many advantages to choosing home health services for a family member or other loved one. And for LGBTQ+ seniors, there are even more.

Transitions like moving are difficult at any stage of life. There are boxes to pack, a lifetime of memories and stuff to go through and consolidate, room layouts to choose from, costs to calculate, logistics to arrange, and more. But for someone who is experiencing health issues, a move to senior living, an adult child’s home, or a group home setting can be especially difficult.

The advantages of home health care for LGBTQ+ elders

First of all, the physical stress of moving is complicated: who wants to sleep in a different bed and in an entirely different space when they’re not feeling their best? Who has the stamina for a car ride to a new place when they’re recovering from a surgery or perhaps a stroke?

Next up, the emotional stress: moving is not simply a change in address or physical location. It’s a loss of all that’s familiar and comfortable, particularly if that person has lived in the same home for decades. There may be grief involved if the home was a place where a spouse or partner lived and has since passed away.

And there’s the practical aspects too: a person who moves to senior living or a different home setting is not only changing their location, they’re also changing their lifestyle — and sometimes, those changes can be positive, but they’re an adjustment nonetheless. Perhaps they need to wake up earlier for breakfast after a move to senior living. Perhaps there’s more noise and bustle in an adult child’s home and less opportunities for privacy. Perhaps the transition involves giving up their keys and the independence that comes with driving.

The unique concerns of LGBTQ+ seniors needing care

For older adults in the LGBTQ+ community, there are additional concerns. Will they find friends in a new place? Will they receive compassionate, competent care from the caregivers in the new place? Will they experience discrimination or other related issues in the new care setting?

Home health care is ideal for many older adults as they age, but for LGBTQ+ seniors, these concerns are real and can be a significant barrier to receiving care.

Sometimes, a move to senior living is not required, but an individual who: has a major surgery or other procedure, experiences a health emergency like a heart attack, or must receive treatment for cancer, for example, could benefit from home health services during their recovery and rehabilitation.

Here are some of the home health services that older adults in the LGBTQ+ community can access:
  1. Wound care for pressure sores or a surgical wound
  2. Patient and caregiver education
  3. Intravenous or nutrition therapy
  4. Injections
  5. Monitoring serious illness and unstable health status

Source: Medicare.gov

Other types of home-based care services include:
  1. Homemaker services (cooking, cleaning, light housework)
  2. Assistance with activities of daily living (bathing, grooming, incontinence care)
  3. Companion care (a comforting presence for socialization and prevention of loneliness and isolation)
  4. Transportation to appointments
  5. Meal planning and preparation

What to consider when researching LGBTQ+ friendly home health care

If you’re considering home health services for an LGBTQ+ elder in your family, take time to find agencies who are committed to providing care that’s inclusive, competent, and compassionate. When you call an agency, ask about their staff training requirements. Ask about professional development and educational opportunities and support for their professional caregivers. Are their practices inclusive? Comprehensive? Do they understand the value and importance of care that’s tailored to the LGBTQ+ senior?

As you reach out to various home health agencies near you, take notes on the way your concerns are addressed and your questions are answered. While bringing in home health services may seem easier than a move to a senior living community, there is still a period of adjustment. You’re also bringing someone in to your private, personal space, and this is not always comfortable at the beginning as you’re establishing a rapport and relationship with the professional caregiver. Keep communication flowing and advocate for yourself (or your loved one) if there’s something missing in the level of care or service delivery.

Explore the availability of home health services in the Long Island area (Queens, Nassau & Suffolk counties): Let’s have a conversation today.