Understanding Continuum of Care Services

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Understanding Continuum of Care Services
Laura M Stephany
HCA/210 Introduction to Health Care
October 26, 2012

Long-term care is defined when an individual requires assistance with physical or emotional needs over a longer period of time. One may need long-term care due to a terminal condition, disability, illness, injury or the frailness of old age (National Care Planning Council, 2012). Continuum of care is an incorporated system of care that will direct patients ultimately through a complete display of health care services. All in all, for a patient it allows him/her to have care managed efficiently from basic care, for example prescriptions, to more advanced care, for example, in-hospital or critical care.

The greatest challenge facing long-term care in health care is caring for the large number of elderly as the Baby Boomer generation ages. The economic burden placed on those in need of long-term care will be overwhelming. According to “Knickman & Snell” (2002), “the real challenges of caring for the elderly in 2030 will involve: (1) making sure society develops payment and insurance systems for long-term care that works better than the existing ones, (2) taking advantage of advances in medicine and behavioral health to keep the elderly as healthy and active as possible, (3) changing the way society organizes community services so that care is more accessible, and (4) altering the cultural view of aging to make sure all ages are integrated into the fabric of community life”.

In conclusion, the necessary changes need to be made now rather than when the Baby Boomers actually need long-term care to relieve not only the financial burden but the social services burden as well.

References:
National Care Planning Council. (2012), Retrieved from http://www.longtermcarelink.net Knickman, J. R., & Snell, E. K. (2002, August). The 2030 Problem: Caring for Aging Baby Boomers. NCBI - Health Services Research, Retrieved from...
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