Podcast: Play in new window | Download
Hi it’s Patrik Hutzel from INTENSIVE CARE AT HOME where we provide tailor made solutions for long-term ventilated Adults & Children with Tracheostomies and where we also provide tailor made solutions for hospitals and Intensive Care Units whilst providing quality services for long-term ventilated patients and medically complex patients at home.
In last week’s blog, I talked about,
CAN IV (INTRAVENOUS) ANTIBIOTICS BE GIVEN AT HOME WITH INTENSIVE CARE AT HOME?
You can check out last week’s blog by clicking on the link below this video:
In today’s blog post, I want to answer a question from one of our clients and the question today is
How to Select Service Provider When You Need Intensive Care at Home?
Hi, it’s Patrik Hutzel from Intensive Care at Home where we provide tailor-made solutions for long-term ventilated, adults and children with tracheostomies and where we also provide tailor-made solutions for hospitals and intensive care units whilst providing quality services for long-term ventilated patients and medically complex patients at home.
So in today’s video blog, I want to talk about how to choose your service provider when it comes to Intensive Care at Home services. And I will talk about that today. I break it down into number one, if you have a loved one in intensive care and you want to go home. Now I also want to break it down, if you have a loved one at home already, which happens sometimes as well.
So let’s break it down to number one, when you have a loved one in intensive care, ventilation and tracheostomy and you can’t see your loved one leaving intensive care anytime soon. The intensive care team is telling you that it takes a while for your loved one to come off the ventilator. They may even tell you they may not come off the ventilator at all, whatever your situation is, you need to think about how do you approach this when going home into the community.
So the first thing that you will need is obviously a service provider and how will you choose a service provider? Well, obviously we, at Intensive Care at Home as far as I’m aware, we are the only service provider worldwide that is accredited to provide Intensive Care at Home. So we are an accredited healthcare service here in Australia. We are also accredited with the NDIS, the National Disability Insurance Scheme, but we are also accredited with hospitals with other funding bodies, such as the TAC in Victoria for Transport Accident Commission or the DVA, the Department of Veteran Affairs.
So we can pretty much work with any funding body in Australia, because again we are an accredited health care service. So we have policies and procedures. We have the workforce, the intensive care nurses that can bring the intensive care skills into the home to make a transition from intensive care to a home care environment safe. Again, because we have third-party healthcare service accreditation and we have accreditation for Intensive Care at Home services. Again, no other organization, as far as I’m aware in the whole world has achieved that to this point. So, therefore we are having a workforce and we’re employing hundreds of years of intensive care nursing experience in the community. Again, I don’t think there is any service provider in this world that brings as many intensive care nursing skills in the community than we do at Intensive Care at Home.
Now, next, the other thing that is important, you need to look at whether a service is actually providing evidence-based care, evidence-based services. And why is this important? Well, you know, everything in medicine in nursing is based on research and Intensive Care at Home services have been around for the last 25 years, predominantly in Germany and other European countries, but also now in Australia since 2013. And there is enough evidence out there that Intensive Care at Home works. It’s a genuine alternative to a long-term stay in intensive care. And why is it a genuine alternative? Because the only way that you can take a patient home from intensive care on a ventilator with a tracheostomy or even on BiPAP/CPAP ventilation without a tracheostomy, even if someone is not ventilated and has a tracheostomy, the only way, evidence-based way that can happen is with intensive care nurses with a minimum of two years intensive care nursing experience.
Again, why is this important? Well, ventilation, tracheostomy, BiPAP/CPAP ventilation, medical complexities in intensive care can only be managed with intensive care nurses in the home. It’s as simple as that. Again, it’s evidence-based, it’s research-based after decades of Intensive Care at Home services. You can find the home mechanical ventilation guidelines that highlight that on our website. If you’ll click on the mechanical home ventilation guidelines, you can find it there it’s evidence-based and it’s research-based. So therefore, with that in mind, a safe transition to a home care environment can happen once a team is in place. That leads me to the next point. The team needs to be in place, a team of intensive care nurses with the doctor overseeing. And again, we can make that happen at Intensive Care at Home.
Next, obviously it also comes down to intellectual property. Now, after we’ve been in business for many years now, and I was part of setting up Intensive Care at Home in Germany, 20, 25 years ago. So, it’s also a case of building the intellectual property to make Intensive Care at Home services possible. It’s not as simple as, okay, we go home with a ventilator with emergency equipment, with a monitor, with a suction machine. You need to have a team that is experienced in making it happen in setting it up correctly in creating a team that is suitable for a home care environment, creating a team that is suitable for your family, for your individual circumstances, to provide you with that quality of life, or in some instances, quality of end-of-life at home instead of intensive care.
And staff selection for us is critical. Staff selection for you as a family is critical. Staff selection for a hospital is critical because if we support the hospitals in taking patients out of intensive care, we’re saving them 50% of the cost of an intensive care bed. And they certainly want to make sure that patients don’t come back. I mean, we’re freeing up an intensive care bed and we want to certainly make sure that patient or client is not coming back because that’s the goal in the first place so that everybody is winning. If a client can stay home predictably with our service Intensive Care at Home, it’s a win-win for everyone. It’s a win for the client. It’s a win for the family. It’s a win for the hospital and it’s also a win for us. It’s all about creating win-win situations.
Now next, what else needs to happen is funding. It needs to be financed. Again, given what I just mentioned, an intensive care bed costs around five to $6,000 per bed day. Now at Intensive Care at Home, we can take clients home for half of the cost.
And again, it all comes down to this win-win situation that we are creating for every stakeholder in this process, starting from the family of course, client that wants to be at home to the hospital. We’re freeing up an ICU bed, that’s in high demand and we’re cutting the cost of an intensive care bed by 50%.
Now, no other bed in a hospital is as expensive as an intensive care bed, is as sought after as an intensive care bed. Again, we are creating that win-win situation for everyone in the process. And especially at the moment with COVID, it’s a no-brainer that, patients and families do not want to be in ICU that are full of COVID. Those patients are incredibly vulnerable. Long-term patients, they’re prone to infections and at home, it’s just a much safer environment, less prone to infection, much better quality of life, in a family environment. You’ve got the intensive care coming to your home.
Now next, funding needs to happen. Obviously you need to look at funding sources, here in Australia, you can look at the NDIS, the National Disability Insurance Scheme. You can look at the TAC in Victoria, the Transport Accident Commission. You can look at iCare in New South Wales, that’s for motor vehicle accidents, and all other insurances in your state that you are in. Or the Department of Veteran Affairs, or you should be looking at private health insurance, or you should be looking at the hospital paying for it, and we can help you with all of that. We wouldn’t be in business today if we weren’t able to help our clients to generate the funding that is necessary for intensive care at home. And we are very experienced in the advocacy side of things, you should definitely talk to us.
Now for our viewers in the UK and in the United States or Canada. Unfortunately, we’re not in the US Canada or the UK yet. However, we are preparing for launching in those countries, we’re just not there yet. The pandemic certainly threw a spanner in the works for us in just with the whole travel arrangements and whatnot. We have so many inquiries now from the United States and Canada and the UK that we don’t want to ignore those phone calls and emails that we’re getting. And we appreciate all the feedback from everyone that’s inquiring about our service. And we are certainly getting ready to launch in other countries too.
What else needs to happen? So equipment needs to be set up, such as ventilators, spare, tracheostomies, tracheostomy dilator, suction machine, monitor, special care beds, and hoist. It depends on, again, depends on the client’s situation, but those are the things that need to be set up from an equipment point of view. Again, we’ve done this over and over again. We are very experienced in taking clients home from ICU or from pediatric ICU. We’ve done this over and over and over again.
That’s it in a nutshell. And then once you are at home, it’s really a case of fine-tuning. Making sure we’ve got the right team for you, fine-tuning the rosters, fine-tuning the care. So you can actually create your own routine. And that’s probably one of the major benefits at home. You are in control, you are in charge. What is your routine? What do you want? It’s not like in the intensive care where it’s a regimented routine based on how the hospital is run.
Whereas at home, you are in control. You can dictate how your routine works and we work with you. We work around that and things that can happen at home as well are, things like, you can go back to school, maybe back to Uni, back to work, depending on your circumstances, of course, but we have many clients that are engaged in activities that they enjoy, engaged in activities that give them meaning. And most importantly, they’re around their family. You can’t beat home. You can’t beat being around your family.
So next, I also want to quickly talk about what should happen if you are at home already. And you are finding that, you don’t have the support that you need. So for example, what I mentioned a minute ago, you need intensive care nurses. You need evidence-based care.
Now it’s not a secret that there are some organizations out there that are providing services to ventilated patients with tracheostomy, at home, with support workers or with non-ICU trained nurses. And that’s simply dangerous. I go, as far as saying that it’s almost a criminal act because, so when you look at intensive care, no general nurses can go into intensive care without going through specialist training. And here we go, in 2021, there’s still organizations that go to patients’ homes with support workers or general registered nurses. It’s like flying the airplane with a cabin crew instead of with a pilot. That’s how dangerous this is and there is enough evidence that patients or clients in the community have died because they weren’t looked after by intensive care nurses. If they were on a ventilator with a tracheostomy, if they were on a tracheostomy without ventilation, or if they were just on BiPAP or CPAP ventilation, without a tracheostomy, people have died, there’s enough evidence out there.
And we have some of that evidence. You can contact us and we can provide you with that evidence. So you got to make sure that you do not base your level of care on perceived funding. Our prerogative, when I first started Intensive Care at Home, it was never around perceived funding. It was always around clinical need. And clinical need is not based on funding. Clinical need is based on a clinical condition and anybody that’s on a ventilator with a tracheostomy, or is ventilated without a tracheostomy who has tracheotomy needs, an intensive care nurse, 24 hours a day. Again, it’s, evidence-based, it’s based on our accreditation, our healthcare service accreditation, and it’s based on the intellectual property that we created with Intensive Care at Home now over the many years. So, you need to make sure it’s evidence-based, you need to make sure it’s not based on perceived funding, and we can help you with the funding for 24-hour intensive home care nursing.
Again, we wouldn’t be in business if we weren’t able to help our clients with funding and knowing which people to talk to, what evidence to provide, and go from there. We also know from experience that when clients are looked after at home by support workers, they have more hospital readmissions, which brings me to our KPIs, our Key Performance Indicators, and they are crystal clear. We want to have all the shifts filled, of course, but we also want to have zero non-elective readmissions back to ICU, because that is our whole promise to provide the intensive care in the home. So you need to look at what can other services that work with support workers or non-registered nurses provide. They can’t help you with the funding because they don’t have the capabilities, the network to advocate with you for funding for 24-hour intensive home care nursing, they just provided on perceived funding available.
And for funding bodies, it’s the path of least resistance, but we are not in the business of the path of least resistance. We are in the business of providing evidence-based care for our clients and creating the environment for them so that can happen in that obviously includes the funding and the advocacy side of things. And if you talk to us, often what happens as well is, once you have 24-hour nursing care with Intensive Care at Home, you can also get support workers as a support mechanism, and they can come through other organizations. We are purely focused on intensive care nurses into the home. That’s our specialty and we often work in partnership with other organizations that provide support workers when and if needed.
So I hope that video today helps to give you a better idea of what needs to happen, how to select your service provider, and also how to change it if you are at home already and you don’t get the level of care that is needed for a ventilated, tracheostomy client or a client that is on BiPAP/CPAP.
And I should also mentioned last but not the least, there are some of our clients, they’re not even ventilated, they’re not even having a tracheostomy. However, they still need an intensive care nurse, 24 hours a day at home because of their complex medical condition.
So that’s it for today.
Please let me know what questions that you have. You can email them to me, or you can put your comments below this video on our website or on YouTube if you’re watching this on YouTube. And, if you have a loved one in intensive care or at home on a ventilator with a tracheostomy or is medically complex, or you need help, just contact us on one of the numbers on the top of the website, or send me an email to [email protected]. That’s Patrik, just with a K at the end.
We’re also currently hiring for, intensive care nurses and pediatric intensive care nurses in Melbourne and in Sydney. And you should contact us, as well, have a look at our career section. We are a very dynamic team of intensive care nurses. That’s bringing the intensive care nursing skills in the community, and it’s absolutely invaluable for our clients. And it’s invaluable for hospitals and for the community in general.
Also, if you like this video, give it a thumbs up, subscribe to my YouTube channel for updates, and click the notification bell. And I look forward talking to you in the next video.
This is Patrik Hutzel from Intensive Care at Home, and I will talk to you in a few days.
Please also have a look at our case studies because there we highlight more about what we can do for clients, how clients can live at home with ventilation and tracheostomies and you can look at our case studies as well at our service section.
Intensive care at home Case studies
And if you are at home already and you need support for your critically ill loved one at home, and you have insufficient support or insufficient funding, please contact us as well. We can help you with all of that.
And if you are an intensive care nurse or a pediatric intensive care nurse with a minimum of two years, ICU or pediatric ICU experience, and you ideally have a critical care certificate, please contact us as well. Check out our career section on our website. We are currently hiring ICU and pediatric ICU nurses for clients in the Melbourne metropolitan area, Northern suburbs, Mornington Peninsula, Frankston area, South Gippsland, as well as Wollongong in New South Wales.
So we are also 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.
Also, we have been part of the Royal Melbourne health accelerator program in the past for innovative healthcare companies.