What do you think?
- Why does living independently matter for home care clients?
- Are there differences between zones? Between mainly rural and urban zones? What factors could account for these differences?
Whether you’re a client, family member, provider, or health system administrator, thinking about why these differences might exist can start or inform conversations and lead to solutions for improved quality of healthcare.
Understanding “help to stay at home”
In a survey conducted from October 2018 to March 2019, the HQCA asked clients receiving home care:
Thinking of the home care services you received through a government home care program, did these services help you stay at home?
Clients could choose “Yes / No / Not sure”
The question further clarifies that “stay at home” means that it enabled the client to stay out of a hospital, long term care site, hospice, or certain levels of supportive living. And by government home care program, we mean services arranged through Alberta Health Services.
Home care helps people remain well, safe, and independent in their home for as long as possible. The home care philosophy promotes client independence, and supplements care and supports provided by families and community services. This measure helps understand if home care is meeting its fundamental objective to support clients to live at home independently for as long as possible.
Considerations when viewing the results:
This data reflects the experiences of seniors aged 65+ receiving long term supportive and maintenance care and are among the largest groups of home care clients.
There are a number of factors providers and leaders can consider to better understand and improve client experiences with home care helping them stay at home. Some questions they could ask before taking action include:
- What may be some reasons why a client feels that home care is not enabling them to stay at home?
- Thinking about your organization, what care and services are available to meet your clients’ wishes and needs? What are the gaps between the answers to these two questions (client-identified gaps in care or services and the current home care basket of services)?
- What changes would need to be made to address these gap between what would support clients to stay at home as long as possible and what is offered through the home care program? Which of those potential changes are within your control? What community services might be available to assist?
For information about the HQCA’s Alberta Seniors Home Care Client Survey, please visit the HQCA website.
The Health Quality Council of Alberta uses the Alberta Quality Matrix for Health as a way of organizing information and thinking around the complexity of the healthcare system. This measure can be used as input to assess home care’s performance in these dimensions of quality:
Dimensions of Quality