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Coronary Artery Disease: Helping a Loved One

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When should I seek outside help?

Some families cannot assume care for a loved one who has severe heart disease without enlisting outside help. Economic stresses may be overwhelming and, if all the family members are at work, adequate at-home supervision and care for the patient may not be possible. Also, some people require more care than their family can be reasonably expected to provide. In these cases, you may consider placing your loved one in a long-term care facility.

The available long-term care options depend on an individual's level of independence and need for nursing supervision. Some people will still be able to do basic activities on their own but may need assistance preparing meals and sorting medicines. Such individuals may be well cared for in a supervised living facility where food is provided and staff is available to assist them, if needed, but where routine nursing care is not provided.

Other people with severe heart disease may have difficulty performing basic activities and may be better served in a nursing home where the staff can assist them with eating and bathing. In these more closely monitored settings, nurses can track your loved one's symptoms and ensure that he or she takes medicines appropriately.

It is important for people in these facilities to feel that they are still a part of their family. Frequent visits by family members or day trips to the family home help a lot to improve the loved ones' emotional health.

At first, you may think that paying for this care will be prohibitively expensive. But there may be options available to make the cost more manageable.


WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: April 06, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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