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2017 │ Edition 3

Kit Whittington

Dear Clients of SHC,

I hope your summer, and easing into fall, is going well.

We have been moving forward with our plans to increase and renew our training for caregivers, family members and the community to prevent incidents in the home.

Our orientation has increased in length of time from six to eight hours for each caregiver before going to their first shift. This allows for additional individual training on equipment typically found in a home setting.

Caregivers come from many backgrounds, including institutions, personal family situations and home care. We go the extra mile to make sure that all are trained individually. I find it exciting when SHC can assist in the guidance and instruction for families in our community during their time of need.

On another note, SHC raised a nice donation at our 30 Year Celebration for the American Parkinson Disease Association. Thank you to all who participated!

Coming up in September is our Annual Caregiver Picnic. We all get together with staff and their families for a fun day of fellowship and food. Since caregivers work in the homes of our clients, this gives people the opportunity to meet coworkers they may only know by name.

Until next time, take good care.

Kit Whittington
RN, BSN, Founder

Improved Doctor Visits: 3 Communication Tips

Clarity about medications and treatments helps prevent serious complications or medical emergencies.

When you visit the doctor, make sure you understand everything they tell you about your health and how to manage your conditions. If the doctor says anything you don’t understand, speak up and ask them to explain using simpler terms.

Don’t feel embarrassed – you didn’t go to medical school and shouldn’t be expected to instantly understand. Their job is to make sure you get good care and part of that is making sure you’re able to make informed decisions and follow through with their instructions.

1. Prepare for appointments

  • List problems you want to discuss.
  • List symptoms or issues – when they started, when they’re worst, etc.
  • List all medications, vitamins and supplements you’re currently taking.

2. Ask plenty of questions and take notes

  • If something isn’t clear, ask the doctor, nurse, or pharmacist to explain it differently, write it down, or use more common terms.
  • For example, if the doctor prescribes a new medication, ask about common side effects or if it will interfere with other medicine.
  • Another example is to ask how to know if a treatment is working or not.

3. Call the doctor when you have questions

  • If a problem or question comes up, call the doctor immediately.
  • Don’t wait until the next appointment.
  • Getting answers right away can prevent small problems from becoming big ones.


Get to Know…Bob

If you’ve called or visited the office recently, there’s a good chance you’ve spoken with Bob, our HR Generalist and Recruiter. Bob’s outgoing personality and eager-to-help attitude make him the perfect person to attract new caregivers to join SHC’s best-of-the-best team. In addition to recruiting and answering incoming calls, Bob is the go-to man for a wide variety of tasks relating to HR and beyond.

Fun facts about Bob:

  • Salt water fish tanks are a hobby (he maintains the tank in our office).
  • Collects and sets up vintage stereo equipment. He also enjoys repairing all types of items.
  • Was a college DJ for local radio station.
  • Married to Rebecca (SHC’s Administrative Manager) 31 years. They have four children, who are mostly grown up.

Top 5 Tips for Healthy Eyes

  1. Eat well for your eyes. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, zinc and vitamins C & E, can help prevent age-related eye problems, such as macular degeneration and cataracts. Try to eat several portions of the following each week: green leafy vegetables, especially spinach and kale, eggs, nuts, beans, oily fish, citrus fruits.
  2. Stop smoking, as it increases the chances of developing cataracts, optic nerve damage and macular degeneration.
  3. Protect your eyes from ultraviolet rays. Buy UV protective sunglasses, which block out 99% – 100% of both UVA and UVB rays. Never look directly into the sun, even with sunglasses on.
  4. Try not to look at your computer screen all day. This can cause a number of problems, including eyestrain, focusing issues, dry eyes, blurred vision and headache.
  5. Get your eyes checked regularly by a qualified optician and avoid buying glasses and lenses online unless you have an up-to-date prescription and a full eye health check.


September 22 is Falls Prevention Day

Practice these top tips for leading a fall free lifestyle.

  • Clean up clutter (such as magazines and papers around hallways and staircases)
  • Remove tripping hazards (such as throw rugs)
  • Install grab bars and handrails (particularly on steps and near bathtubs and toilets)
  • Install and use bright lighting (nightlights are also helpful in bedrooms and bathrooms)
  • Wear shoes with good grip (that fit properly and comfortably)
  • Use nonslip mats on potentially slippery floors (such as in the bathroom)
  • Take your time (pause for a moment when going from laying to sitting, or sitting to standing)


Do you know the various kinds of bed railings?

Bed railings are utilized to help develop a supportive and assistive sleeping environment. They have many names, including grownup mobile bed railings, help bars, bed side rails, half railings, safety rails, bed handles, side rails, grab bars and hospital bed railings to name a few.

Consumers shopping online can purchase many mobile bed railing products with no prescription or doctor’s recommendation. Other forms of bed railings are subject to FDA supervision and thought to be medical devices.

Do you know the various kinds of bed railings?
There is no standard definition for bed rails, however they usually are split into three different kinds: mobile bedrails used for kids, mobile bed railings for grownups, and hospital bed rails which can be attached to your hospital or medical bed.

Grownup Mobile Bed Rails: 
A portable bed rail is any bed railing apparatus that’s attachable and removable from a bed, not designed by the original bed manufacturer, and is installed on or utilized over the side of a bed. These railings are employed on beds designed for consumers and are meant to 1) reduce the hazard of falling from your bed, 2) help the user in repositioning in the bed, or 3) help the customer in transitioning into or from the bed. Mobile bed railings for grownups are found in lots of distinct settings like homes, assisted living residences and long-term care facilities.

Hospital Bed Railings: 
These bed rails are thought to be either part of or an accessory to some hospital bed or alternative FDA-regulated bed. They are viewed as medical devices.