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Hearing the words ambulance or emergency room is a scary proposition for most people, but even more so when it involves someone with dementia. Not only is your loved one in some type of crisis, but the setting in which they are receiving help, at times, can also be very stressful. That is why it is important to plan ahead so that when that emergency does arise you have the necessary tools in place to ensure that your loved one is kept calm, safe and receives the most efficient and effective care possible.
Organize Your Paperwork: This is very important, especially if you are caring for someone with dementia. Everyone should have a copy of their Power of Attorney for Healthcare or Guardianship paperwork with them at all times, because an emergency can happen anywhere and at any time.
For those caring for someone with dementia this is especially important if the document has been activated, meaning two physicians or a physician and psychologist have signed the form stating that this person is no longer capable of making medical decisions for themselves or is incapacitated. Once activated this document then informs the Medical Team who is legally able to make important healthcare decisions for your loved one.
In addition, if your loved one has a “Do Not Resuscitate” Order from a physician it is important to have a copy of this as well and they should be wearing a “DNR” bracelet at all times.
Know Their History: In an emergency, your loved one may not be able to speak for themselves. Therefore, it is important to know their health history, allergies and current medication list. The Chippewa Valley Family Caregiving Alliance provides a handy pocket-guide called the Caregiver Health Guide, which can help you capture and keep this information with you at all times. This Guide can be easily downloaded and printed from their website, which is located at www.chippewavalleycaregiving.org.
Be Their Advocate: As the caregiver for someone with dementia, you may have already found yourself being their voice when ordering at a restaurant or when having conversations with friends and family. Throughout the disease process, your voice begins to fill-in where theirs cannot. The same is true in an Emergency Room setting. You need to be their voice to help provide information quickly and correctly to the Medical Team. Otherwise, the wrong procedure, medication or conclusion about care might be reached. You need to tell them what your loved one would want to happen.
Communicate: The best form of communication is to tell whoever is in the room who you are, what your role is in the care of your loved one, and who is legally making the decisions about care for this situation. It is also good to give them a brief medical history for your loved one. For example, “Hi, my name is Paula; I am Jerry’s daughter and legal guardian. Dad has Lewy Body Dementia. He fell down the stairs, hit his head and is not talking like he normally does.” This introduction should be made to every person who enters your loved one’s room.
Calm and Collect: Another very important role is to be there for your loved one and to do your best help keep them calm and comfortable. Hold their hand, talk closely and soothingly to them. While at the same time, collect all of the information on your loved one’s condition, procedures they will be having done, hospitalization expectations and discharge instructions.
Question the Care: Lastly, make sure that you ask questions along the way, so that your loved one receives the care that they need. In addition, this will ensure that you understand what care they will need once they are discharged. By using these tips, you will be helping to ensure the best care for your loved one in every situation, emergency or not.
My father has been here only a little over 2 months. The positive change in him has been DRAMATIC! I would HIGHLY recommend Azura........ I would give it 10 stars if they allowed it! This is the premier facility for any family member with cognitive issues! They do treat residents like family, believe it!
Review posted by Stephen Diedrich
The staff at Oak Creek are all fabulous! It takes special people to care for our loved ones. If has been a trying year for all and the staff at oak creek get a shout out for their kindness and compassion they give to my mom and the others. They have all gone above and beyond to make things seem as normal as possible for my mom! All of the staff have been so helpful and kind! They are all fabulous!!
Review posted by Mary Kubacki
"We want to thank you for the loving special care you took of our mother, Diane. It was truly mom's home and you all became part of our family. Everything was home for her....from the beautiful rooms, large sunny windows all around, good food made with love, fun and personal activities from people who really loved our mom. We would highly recommend your facility to anyone. The staff from the director, to the doctor, to the nurse, to the caregivers and the maintenance man were all extremely helpful, caring, loving and professional. There are not enough words to say how much we appreciate all of you. Your exceptional care, kindness, and love were beyond anything we could have imagined. You were part of our family, and we will miss you." - Gail Sommers and Deborah Guse
Review posted by Gail Sommers & Deborah Guse
Just moved my sister-in-law to Azura Stoughton on February 12th. I feel like I’ve found a little piece of dementia heaven. The staff has gone way beyond my expectations to meet her needs and take time to know her. Anyone who has dementia deserves the TLC they receive at Azura. I’m so impressed.
Review posted by Gail Aaroen
Thank you to the Azura Memory Care team, Sheboygan location for the amazing, loving care they provided my dad. They truly loved and cared for my dad as if he was their own. It is such a warm, loving, family environment I only wish we would have moved my dad there years earlier!
Review posted by Patti Bunch
Review posted by Ron Paxson
I have enjoyed working with patients at Azura Care as a Physical Therapist Assistant. The staff has been very helpful in sharing important information about the patients to make their therapy sessions as productive as possible. They are open to learning techniques to help keep patients safe and improve their ability to perform daily tasks with less assistance. Their interactions with patients show caring and compassion with a focus on the needs of each individual to enjoy the best quality of life possible.
Review posted by Barb Eisenberg
The journey of caregiving for my Aunt started over 4 years ago. It has been a very long difficult journey. It is hard to watch and frustrating to watch a loved one decline, as well as for them to live the decline. My Aunt found her final peace at Azura Memory Care in Sheboygan. It was not only her peace but mine as well. I no longer had to worry about her care as I could see that she was loved by her Azura family. She passed away on June 21 and they knew how important that it was for me to be there, but I also found peace that if I was not there, she was with family that loved her. No words can express the appreciation for the care, compassion and love that they have for all their residents. God has opened many doors through my journey and the doors at Azura were truly a gift from God. This family made a difference in a long journey. I will always have them in my thoughts and prayers. They are where and doing what they are meant to do!
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