Psychiatric Home Care Services
Continuum's psychiatric home care offers collaborative, comprehensive psychiatric nursing services to patients in their homes. These services are provided by experienced psychiatric nurses and are designed to:
- Prevent hospitalizations
- Increase access to mental health services
- Provide follow-up treatment
- Help families in maintain community living and improve their quality of life
Psychiatric nurses work with your primary care doctor and/or psychiatrist in planning care and also work closely with other care team members or involved community providers.
Who May Benefit from Psychiatric Home Care?
Those who are most likely to benefit from Continuum's psychiatric home care services are those who have one or more of the following conditions:
- Serious and persistent mental illness as well as risk for repeated hospitalizations
- A first psychotic episode with a high risk of nonadherence
- Exacerbations of chronic schizophrenia and/or affective disorders, including major depression
- A history of medication nonadherence
- A recent release from hospital care and need of follow-up to prevent relapse
- A need for monitoring of a new psychotropic medication
- Concomitant medical and psychological problems
- Behavioral or emotional problems associated with physical illness
- Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia
- Confusion following surgery, strokes or cancer treatment or related to medications
- Chronic pain and related depression
- Alcohol and other drug abuse and/or dependence
- Anxiety and/or panic attacks
- Somatization disorders
- Character/personality disorders experiencing a crisis
- Paranoia disorders
- Suicidal ideation
- Families/caregivers in need of psychosocial support and education
Psychiatric Home Care Services Offered
Services are based on a comprehensive physical, psychological, mental, cognitive, family and environmental assessment of the patient within the home. Interventions are provided by licensed, certified clinical nurse specialists or by nurses with significant experience in psychiatric nursing. Continuum's psychiatric home services include the following:
- Psychiatric nursing consultations and evaluations
- Psycho-educational approaches with individual, family and groups directed toward increasing the patient's level of knowledge and control over the illness, and enhancing coping skills through:
- Symptom and illness management
- Medication teaching
- Coping skills
- Communication skills
- Medication administration monitoring and management
- Venipuncture and monitoring of blood levels of psychotropic medication
- Post-hospitalization follow-up to help in bridging the patient's transition from hospital to community
- Identification, coordination and mobilization of the supports needed to maintain the client in the community
- Therapeutic interventions, including:
- Supportive therapy
- Counseling, individual and family
- Relaxation techniques
- Life review
- Clinical case management
- Psychotherapy interventions, including:
- Brief therapy
- Family therapy
- Crisis intervention
- Caregiver support and education
Assessment for Psychiatric Home Care Services
Although each patient is screened according to his or her need for care, some typical criteria to consider in making a psychiatric home health referral are:
- Does the individual have a psychiatric diagnosis?
- Is the individual under the care of a doctor?
- Is the individual homebound?
- Does the individual require the skills of a registered nurse?
- Can care be safely provided in the home?