According to a study conducted for the NIH, emergency room admissions actually fall on Christmas Day. This is especially true for elderly folks. Somehow, Christmas is just not a dangerous time for the Elderly. No, this is not evidence that Egg Nog is a good food.
But, it does foreshadow another statistical reality which is that hospital admissions do increase, above trend, during the days following Christmas.
With an increase in admissions, it is important for family members to remember a few things. 1, Be sure to have an executed copy of your Power of Attorney and Health Care Power of Attorney with you. 2, Be sure the hospital gets a copy of any Advance Directive or DNR in place at admission. 3, Ask lots of questions, do not assume that “Medicare” is paying for everything or that your loved one “has coverage.”
Lastly, do not underestimate the importance of being there. Hospital admissions are always challenging. They can be particularly so after holidays because elderly folks often “hold on” to get through a holiday ignoring signs, symptoms and issues that should have been given voice. Being with someone, helping them to seek diagnosis and treatment, is the key to making sure that they get to be discharged from the hospital, or rehabilitation, to go home instead of remaining in long term care.
This article is written by an attorney at Attorney Donald Wyatt, PC. Always consult an attorney before making any legal decisions. To make an appointment today for a free consultation, please click here to contact us.