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Stop the Bleed
20 April 2018

Uncontrolled bleeding is the number one cause of preventable deaths, according to the World Health Organization. No matter how rapid the arrival of professional emergency responders, bystanders will always be first on the scene. Someone who is bleeding can die in minutes while waiting for emergency services to arrive.

The White House launched the "Stop the Bleed" program in October 2015, after its development through collaborative efforts between the Department of Defense, American College of Surgeons, National Security Council, FBI and Emergency Medical Services. The Stop the Bleed Awareness campaign was initiated to help reduce the number of preventable deaths from uncontrolled bleeding by training bystanders bleeding control techniques.

The course is designed to teach citizens how to recognize types of bleeding, as well as bleeding control techniques including direct pressure, packing a wound and when and how to apply a tourniquet. Class attendees get to practice the skills they learn to empower them to know what to do and how to act in the event they encounter someone with uncontrolled bleeding.

Although this program was developed as a direct result of mass causality type events such as active shooters and bombings, its same principles can be applied to injuries someone might occur in their everyday life including motor vehicle collisions or work/home accidents.

Often people who attend a Stop the Bleed course report that they were very apprehensive about being able to handle the sight of blood or be able to help someone who is injured, but most leave the class feeling confident that they could help save a life if presented with that situation.

The Stop the Bleed program is bringing public awareness to the idea that "No one should die from uncontrolled bleeding".

Stop the Bleed classes are held monthly by Riverside Community Hospital and information can be found at www.riversidecommunityhospital.com and www.bleedingcontrol.org.



Wendy McEuen, MSN, RN, CEN, TCRN

Trauma Outreach and Injury Prevention Coordinator
Riverside Community Hospital

Observations of a Home Care Provider
20 February 2018

Often times in home care we are helping with big issues that aren't easy to fix. But just as often we are dealing with big issues that are REALLY EASY to fix and we want to share some common ones with you. In no particular order

Here are three things we see all of time and are easy to fix:

  1. Hydration – Very few people stay hydrated enough, and nobody ever thinks they are dehydrated. Hydration affects digestion, mood, alertness, and every other bodily function. Drinking water is the best way to hydrate. Smoothies, soups, and some fruits and vegetables can be a great way to introduce more fluid into a diet too.
  2. Nutrition – People need to eat. Food is our fuel. It's common for us to work with people who aren't getting enough to eat. Seniors often have diminished appetites, they don't wantto cook for just themselves, and they feel like they are bothering people when they ask for a meal. When people eat well their bodies function better. So, make sure your loved ones are eating, and make food available to them even if they say they aren't hungry.
  3. Respite Care – This is a break for the family caregiver. It's common for us to talk to a family caregiver who looks tired. Really tired. They don't see it, but we can. Everybody can see it and it's not healthy. Here is an example of a typical conversation for a respite care visit: "I have to go to the bank, post office, pharmacy, and gas station. It should take me about 90 minutes. Can you send someone to cover for 2 hours so I don't have to rush?" PLEASE DON'T DO THIS. TAKE A BREAK. YOU DESERVE IT. YOU NEED IT. Caregivers get tired. Professional caregivers provide care in shifts. When their shift is over they go home to rest, take care of their personal business,and enjoy their time off. Family caregivers often don't get that time away and it shows. You need time away to recharge. Don't rush, take time to enjoy the sunshine and flowers. Make arrangements for a family member, friend, or home care provider to come in so you can take a real break.

Please be sure your loved ones are drinking enough, eating enough, and you're getting a break. Of course, Surety Home Care can help with each of these.

Fall Prevention For Seniors
03 January 2018

It's been reported that 1 in every 3 seniors falls each year and 6 out of every 10 falls happen in the home. Falls are especially dangerous for seniors as they can lead to so many other things and seniors recover so slowly. Fortunately, the risk of falling can be dramatically reduced if you prepare.

Here are a few tips:

  1. Get an eye exam - With weak or blurry vision, you aren't going to see things that might cause a fall.
  2. Exercise - Regular exercise strengthens muscles, improves flexibility, dexterity and balance.
  3. Wear the right shoes - Wear sturdy shoes or slippers with non-skid soles. Avoid walking around the house in socks.
  4. Clear a path - Make clear walkways throughout the house. Make sure furniture is placed widely enough apart to prevent bumping into.
  5. Light up the house - Use good lighting throughout the house. Stick-on lights are a great solution for areas without lamps or ceiling lighting.
  6. Grab Bars - Install grab bars in bathrooms to assist with getting in and out of tubs and showers and using the toilet.
  7. Remove clutter - A fall is less likely to happen in a clean an organized living space.
  8. Remove floor rugs and hide cords.
  9. Be aware of side effects - Some medications cause dizziness and/or drowsiness. Be aware and prepare to have assistance during these times.
Respite Care
01 December 2017

It's easy to forget about your own health and wellbeing while caring for a loved one. But you shouldn't. If your health or attitude is suffering, the quality of care you're giving will likely suffer too. Respite care might be the solution for you. Respite care is temporary care for an adult or child, providing relief for the regular caregiver.

Because of the love you have for who you're taking care of, it is easy to be unaware of how hard it is. Caregiving is draining both mentally and physically. You need to take care of yourself to be able to take care of others. Taking a break to recharge your battery is good for everyone.

Here are a few tips and things to consider on how to get the most out of your time.

  1. If you don't have friends or family who can step in, you can look to a home care service, adult day care or assisted living facility. Home care services are a good option for people whose stress level might be too high if they are in an unfamiliar place, especially without their regular caregiver.
  2. Plan your time away. Is this time going to be just for running errands and taking care of your personal business? Or are you able to schedule some time for fun and relaxation? Try to organize your time so you can make the most of it.
  3. Prepare a relative or friend to handle issues that might come up during your time away. Have the respite care giver call that person first if a non-emergency situation arises.
  4. Prepare your loved one before you go. It might be a good idea for you to bring in the respite care giver for a practice run with you there before you go. The three of you can spend a few hours together getting to know each other and you can transition some of the care during this time.
  5. Take regular respite breaks and try to get away for a night or two if you can. Sometimes it takes a day or two to fully relax.
  6. Don't feel guilty for taking a break. Everyone needs one and you'll be ready to go after you've recharged.