JACKSON, MISS– Bringing home a sick or elderly loved one from the hospital could be pretty daunting, especially if you have no medical training.
The Caregiver Act is a new law that went into effect July 1st. The act requires hospitals to grant patients the opportunity to name a caregiver that would have access to their care and medical records for the purpose of aftercare once they leave the hospital. This means that caregiver would be notified that the patient is about to be discharged, so the caregiver could ask any questions to help them keep the patient well.
“It provides an opportunity for the family caregiver and the patient to ask questions about nursing and medical tasks,” says Kelly Cress, Interim Director of AARP Mississippi.
According to AARP Mississippi, there are 826,000 patients that have a family caregiver. Of those, 69% do not have a visit from a home health or hospice nurse on a regular basis.
Cress says the Caregiver Act also provides a little training on basic aftercare tasks for the caregiver before the patient is released, which could mean less trips to the hospital due to relapse, which in turn saves the patient money.