About the SeniorAdvisor.com 2014 In-Home Innovation Scholarship: We started the scholarship program to bring awareness of the unique benefits and challenges of in-home caregiving for seniors to younger generations. The questions posed by the scholarship encouraged our nation’s future caregivers to present solutions for improving home care in the United States. College-aged students were required to answer one of the three essay topics below and provide a short bio as part of their scholarship application. Read the winning essays here.
How can your major of study improve the lives of seniors receiving in-home care services?
Essay response by Kiera Grofsik, University of Central Florida
In the field of nursing, there is no bias. Nurses are trained to help anyone and everyone who needs help. Yes, there are nurses who specialize in certain areas but what I love about nursing is that I will be trained to provide assistance to anyone in need. Seniors truly need extra care and attention. I believe that when I receive my degree I will be able to help the lives of seniors who are receiving in-home care treatment in a variety of ways.
In nursing, students are taught how to care for seniors and improve their daily lives. Seniors are often neglected and nurses provide the comfort and help they need. Through weekly visits and performing tasks during the visits such as checking blood pressure, weight, and other vital signs, we can help make seniors more comfortable in their own home environment. Nurses are also taught how to react in emergency situations such as performing CPR and working an AED. It is their job to make sure that the client is comfortable and safe.
An important job for nurses in home health care is to make sure elderly clients are taking their prescribed medications at the right time, dosage, etc. This is very important in the lives of seniors because they can easily forget to take their different prescription medications. It is crucial for nurses to be aware of the different medications that certain elderly clients must take. It is also important for nurses doing in-home care visits to be aware of certain side effects with the medications that are normal and not normal. Nurses need to be made aware of the different physical and emotional side effects associated with the medications as well.
At times, many seniors feel helpless because of their lack of ability to perform certain tasks later in life so it is important to assist the clients but also to have them perform tasks they can do on their own. Helping the elderly and showing them how they can do tasks on their own is also very constructive and can help improve seniors’ well being because they will become more independent and hopefully will eventually be able to do certain tasks on their own. I believe that another way nurses can be helpful is to listen to and converse with their senior clients. I know from experience that elderly people enjoy telling stories and passing on their wisdom, and I have enjoyed listening as well! Also, by forming this relationship with their senior clients, nurses are able to detect different mood changes in their client and be able assist them. Many times, seniors are alone in their homes and even though this is the atmosphere they are most comfortable with, I believe that when nurses converse with their senior clients the relationship that forms is very special.
In conclusion, the field of nursing is very important in providing care and support to improve the lives of seniors receiving in-home care services. The compassion they show is crucial and I hope as a nurse I will someday show that same compassion to my clients.
Kiera is a sophomore student at the University of Central Florida.