Striving for PROGRESS, not perfection

A 74-year-old lady, Mrs Nanda Kiran* was brought to our Centre by her husband and daughter-in-law, with chief complaints of difficulty in swallowing food and water, regurgitating food particles, reduced speech, decreased social interaction, reduced expressions/reactions, reduced interest in activities of daily living and a shuffling gait. She had a past history of Stroke and was a known case of Parkinson’s Disease and Vascular Dementia.
At the Centre, she was observed to refuse food and if insisted upon, her face would convey pain in swallowing. Medical investigations conducted revealed no physiological reasons for pain or regurgitation of food particles. Thus, motivation and distraction techniques were employed to shift her focus from the process of swallowing and increase her food intake. Post meals, she would be engaged in brief time-limited cognitive/motor activities (for e.g. number cancellation/grain segregation tasks, etc.) to keep her occupied and reduce/prevent regurgitation. She was also introduced in various social situations (meeting new people, making requests, etc.). Hints/cues were provided during interactions to aid and increase her participation. The case was incontinent, for which a toilet schedule was created with her being taken to the toilet every 3 hours. Moreover, a daily schedule was created, to provide a sense of order and purpose. Various cognitive, social and recreational based activities were conducted during the day, to stimulate her on different levels. Physiotherapy interventions were introduced for improving her gait pattern and increasing her upper and lower limb strength.
Post interventions, the case was able to eat meals without any difficulty. Her food intake increased, with her weight increasing by 5.5 kgs. She started going for formal dinners and would choose her food of preference. Her interactions improved significantly. She started independently interacting with people of different age-groups. As her interactions increased, so did her reactivity, with her even using humour. Although she couldn’t be taken off diapers permanently, towards her end of time with us, she was able to communicate her need to use the toilet most of the time. She would look forward to attending the Centre and would remind the staff about her daily activities. Post physiotherapy interventions, she resumed her evening walks and occasional dances with her husband, although she needed constant reminders to take longer steps.
The above case highlights the need for more Centres that can provide rehabilitation in a holistic and integrated manner, by offering not just medical but also physical and psychosocial rehabilitation to seniors under one roof. Currently, most places offer medical and physical rehabilitation to seniors, ignoring their and their families’ psychosocial needs. As professionals working in the field of geriatric health, it is important for us to work towards improving the senior’s health in a holistic manner.
*Name changed to maintain confidentiality.
To know more or to visit our Old Age Home and Assisted Living Facility: Email us on hello@src.foundation or call us on +91 8380087027.

A little progress each day adds up to BIG results

Mr Neeraj Wadkar* is a 74-year-old senior with a history of Mental Retardation, who was shifted to our Assisted Living Facility post discharge from a hospital. He came to us malnourished, with rib fractures, severe muscle contractures and muscle stiffness in both legs, and was under treatment for pulmonary embolism.

During his first few days at our Assisted Living Facility, Mr Wadkar was given time to familiarise himself with the facility, staff and routine. Since he had been a member of our Elder Day Care Centre, his transition was smooth and he adjusted easily to the team. At meal times, he would eat the food served without any particular food preferences or dislikes. Nutritious, dietician advised meals were served to him through the day. Liquid intake was also monitored, and over a period of 2 months, his weight increased by 2 kgs. At the time of admission, Mr Wadkar was unable to walk even with support. He could not stretch his legs straight, and his back was slightly stooped. Physiotherapy interventions were introduced to improve his mobility, range of movements and to strengthen both his upper and lower limbs. Mr Wadkar was also preoccupied with concerns about his sleep and had an increased dependency on his caretakers which resulted in his need to have a companion present with him at all times. He constantly wanted to hold someone’s hand, even while sleeping. To reduce his over-dependency, he was gradually weaned off the hand holding habit by giving him other objects to hold during interactions, and distracting him from his need to hold hands. He was also given tasks during the day to physically and cognitively tire him, to improve his night time sleeping.

Towards the end of his second month with us, Mr Wadkar showed signs of loss of power in his left hand and leg. He was evacuated immediately to the nearest hospital, where he was diagnosed with Chronic Subdural Haematoma, which was a side effect of the blood-thinning medicine being given to him for the treatment of pulmonary embolism. Post-discharge, physiotherapeutic interventions were carried out for restoring muscle power and improve the muscle functioning. Our Doctor was in regular contact with the treating physicians and made the necessary changes in the treatment plan as advised. The nurses regularly dressed the operative wound and dispensed medicines on time, which led to an uneventful and quick recovery.

Currently, Mr Wadkar is able to carry out all his activities of daily living with assistance and he is walking unaided. His need for constant companionship and over dependence on caretakers has reduced, and although he is still preoccupied about his sleep, his night time sleep has improved.

The above case highlights the need for more facilities that can look after people who need a higher level of care than can be provided at home and at the same time do not require hospitalisation, such as an assisted living facility.

*Name changed to maintain confidentiality

To know more or to visit our Assisted Living Facility: Email us on hello@src.foundation or call us on +91 8380087027.

Less House, More Home

Early this year, SRCF started working on establishing an Old Age Home & Assisted Living facility in Baner in Pune. We customised an apartment block to accommodate up to 36 residents with each flat made to cater to the needs of elderly.

As a full-service facility managed by a professional team with compassion, we believe we have created that right mix of so many things which makes any place, a home and not just a house.

We are well on the way to create a diverse collection of books for our library and a small area for audiovisual entertainment to keep our residents engaged and happy.

SRCF began accepting admissions to its Old Age Home in late March, and we are happy to report that we already have 10 residents at our Facility who have been referred to our Old Age Home.

To know more: Email us on hello@src.foundation or call us on +91 8380087027.

A New Year, New Dream, New Approach

Since its inception SRCF has worked towards supporting dependent individuals and the aged to meet their physical, medical, social and emotional needs, be it at their home or at our Pune Centre. Responding to changing needs of people, SRCF added Day Care Services last year.

SRCF is now pleased to announce that we are starting a 24 hours Old Age Home and Assisted Living Facility at Baner, Pune, Maharashtra, India.

This service will be useful for a wide range of people, including healthy and independent elders looking for a supportive environment to enjoy their retired lives; seniors requiring some assistance with their activities of daily living, and individuals requiring a higher level of medical care and daily living support than might be possible to provide at home. Our Day Care Services will continue to be provided at this Centre.

Care for residents will be provided by a qualified team of staff doctor, nurses, attendants and rehabilitative professionals – physiotherapists, psychologists, occupational therapists who will help residents holistically. This facility is in an independent building, with three floors and a lift. There is ample space for activities, recreation and community events. It is centrally located with ease of access to Pune City and Mumbai – Pune Highway.

We would like to thank Tata Trusts for their continued support in our efforts.

To know more: Email us on hello@src.foundation or call us on +91 8380087027.