Hi it’s Patrik Hutzel from INTENSIVE CARE AT HOME where we provide tailor made solutions for long-term ventilated Adults& Children with Tracheostomies by improving their Quality of life and where we also provide tailor made solutions to hospitals and Intensive Care Units to save money and resources, whilst providing Quality Care!
In the last blog I talked about
You can check out last week’s blog here.
In today’s blog I want to answer a question from one of our readers.
Can you advocate for my daughter to get 24/7 ICU at home because she’s on ventilation with tracheostomy
So in this short video, I want to answer a question from one of our readers Denise.
So Denise writes, I’m currently receiving services from a company, and I’m not going to mention the company in Sydney, Australia. They provide registered nurses in the home for my daughter Stacy for 16 hours daily. My daughter Stacy is ventilated with a tracheostomy and she’ needs 24 hours a day intensive care nursing because that’s what she needs and would get if she was in ICU.
I’m looking because I would like to receive coverage for 24 hours daily. I’m at work during the day and then I have to get up at night to provide care for my daughter Stacy. I have to suction her, I have to change her brief and have to turn her so she’s not getting pressure sources, etc.
According to the company that I’m using, there is a shortage of nurses who want to work in home care because the hospitals and nursing homes pay more. At least that was, that is what the company’s saying. They’re having a hard time recruiting nurses. There are several of my shifts that are open even though she has to been approved for 16 hours daily. I have seen on your website that you provide care up to 24 hours a day with intensive care nurses.
And I have also seen that you’ve advocated for other clients to get funding. I would be really interested to find out more about how you do that and what are the chances that you could do the same for us. My daughter at the moment is funded through the NDIS, which is a government funded program.
There is no way that I can personally afford to pay privately for these services. As you might imagine, our lives have been pretty tough. There have been times that I couldn’t work because I had to care for my daughter. If I was independently wealthy, this wouldn’t be a problem. Too bad. There is not a wealthy benefactor somewhere who is empathetic to our plight and could help.
My daughter’s care has become much more involved and complex since January. This last hospitalisation she suffered a stroke under the eyes of the hospital staff, but fortunately, God is great and she’s recovering due to his grace. The experience is emotionally very draining. She is my only daughter and I have dedicated my life to caring for her.
Most people are born with trisomy 18 pass away at a very young age, but this one she’s a miracle girl and we are blessed for each day that we have her. Thank you for taking the time to respond.
Denise in a Sydney
thank you for writing in.
I can fully understand your situation because I’ve seen this situation over and over again.
When we first started out with intensive care at home, we actually started not by taking patients home from intensive care. We actually started with clients that were at home already and that had not enough coverage or another issue that some of those clients faced, they had some coverage, but they were going back to ICU all the time because just like yourself, the companies couldn’t find staff or the staff were inadequately trained and the advantage for us is with intensive care at home, we can send you ICU/PICU nurses into the home and they don’t need to be trained on ventilation and tracheostomy because that’s bread and butter for us.
All of our nurses have a minimum of two years ICU or pediatric ICU experience. And they also have most of the time of postgraduate certificate/ diploma or the equivalent of that. So number one, I am not surprised that your current nursing agency can’t find enough staff, let alone that they can advocate for 24 hour care for you.
Let me explain. One of the issues why most non specialised nursing agencies can’t attract staff to look after ventilated patients at home cause it’s simply because it’s a specialist skill that requires years of training and practical experience. It’s high risk to look after ventilated patients with tracheostomy, especially, especially if the registered nurses are not ICU trained.
And that sounds, is the case in your situation. As I said, the minimum requirement for somebody at home on a ventilator is that the nurses are ICU trained and have a minimum of two years ICU/PICU experience. So, and I totally understand that. If you have 16 hours a day of care, and most of the shifts are vacant, of course you’re struggling.
You would also be struggling ,with 16 hours a day ICU nurses because ,somebody on a ventilator with tracheostomy needs 24/7 Intensive care at home with ICU/PICU nurses, period.
This is also evidence based and documented in the mechanical home ventilation guidelines that we have published on our website here. The guidelines clearly demand (not recommend) to have 24/7 ICU/PICU nurses at home for ventilated patients with tracheostomies.
You can read the guidelines here
Home mechanical VENTILATION GUIDELINES
We come from a different perspective. I mean, if your current nursing agency is telling you that nobody wants to work in homecare because the hospitals and nursing homes pay more, I say, that is not accurate. Um. From our perspective, we are providing an intensive care substitution service.
And that means, um, we are basically go back to ICU and PICU and we say, look, we can reduce your $5,000 per bed day ICU bed by 50%. Right? And by doing that, you know, it’s what the hospitals and the health funding bodies want because it saves money, right? And that still leaves us enough room to pay our nurses a competitive wage.
Most home care nursing agencies have a marketing problem to attract the right staff and we believe by focusing on providing an intensive care substitution service in the home we have a very attractive offer for clients ad their families as well as for ICU/PICU, hospitals and health care funding bodies.
And that, you know, helps us with recruitment, getting ICU/PICU nurses out of ICU\PICU. So that’s number one. Number two, with advocating for 24 hour care. Again, we’ve taken some of our clients from two shifts a week to 24 hour care. The simple reason for that is we are clinicians. We are a team of passionate ICU/PICU professionals, and we can advocate for clients.
We employ hundreds of years of ICU/PICU nursing experience combined and our service gives our clients the advantage to tap into this intellectual property and experience.
We understand the clinical side of ICU/PICU, and we also understand the clinical side in a home care setting. So for us, it’s second nature to advocate for clients because we understand the clinical issues so well, and we know what’s required to advocate for someone who needs 24 hour care instead of “living in intensive care”.
So that’s fairly easy for us. And because we are intensive care professionals, we have a broad network to make this happen, right? We have surrounded ourselves with the right people that can help us with, with the, with the advocacy and then getting the results that our clients want and need.
Also, if you think about it from a recruitment perspective, you know, you look at the intensive care nurses, you know, that are required for looking after your daughter at home.
How do we attract staff if other agencies or nursing companies can’t attract staff? Well, quite simple for an intensive care nurse wanting to work in the community. They don’t want to work for company X or for company Y, but they want to show on their CV, well I’ve worked for intensive care at home because it’s related to the ICU or intensive care.
So that’s how we attract staff because they want to take the ICU skills into a home care environment. That’s why we can attract and retain staff just by our branding, by our marketing, knowing that an intensive care nurse can also work for intensive care at home, which is obviously complementing their skills and experience and they can show they’ve worked on a different side in, in intensive care.
So also Denise, you know some families are under the impression there is no further funding for them. And we have proven over and over again that there is funding. As long as you have a network where you can advocate and if you have the clinical insight to advocate, we are, we know from experience that the nursing agencies that you work with, they’re not advocates because they’re business people, they’re not clinicians, which means they don’t really understand the space they’re in.
And it means that you know the business people they don’t understand what your daughter is going through in terms of clinical requirements and they don’t really understand what you are going through. So I fully understand that the care for your daughter is very, very complex and that’s why she needs ICU/PICU nurses.
And just as I explained to you, we can help you with advocacy and we can also help you with staff recruitment. Cause that’s what we do.
If you have any questions, any further questions, just shoot me another email to [email protected] or give me a call on one of the numbers on the top of the website. I know you’re in Sydney in Australia.
Just shoot me an email and I’ll get back to you. Take care for now. This is Patrick Hartsell from intensive care at home, and I’ll talk to you in a few days.
If you want to find out how we can help you to get your loved one out of Intensive Care including palliative care or Long-term acute care (also nursing home) or if you find that you have insufficient support for your loved one at home on a ventilator, if you want to know how to get funding for our service or if you have any questions please send me an email to [email protected] or call on one of the numbers below.
Australia/New Zealand +61 41 094 2230
USA/Canada +1 415-915-0090
UK/Ireland +44 118 324 3018
Also, check out our careers section here
We are currently hiring ICU/PICU nurses for clients in the Melbourne metropolitan area, northern suburbs, Mornington Peninsula and in South Gippsland/Victoria.
We are an NDIS, TAC (Victoria) and DVA (Department of Veteran affairs) approved community service provider in Australia.
Also, have a look at our range of full service provisions here
We have also been part of the Royal Melbourne health accelerator program for innovative health care companies last year!
Thank you for tuning into this week’s blog.
This is Patrik Hutzel from INTENSIVE CARE AT HOME and I see you again next week in another update!