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  • 1st Focus Homecare

10 Tips for Medication Assistance for Seniors at Home

Medication Assistance for Seniors at Home

Medication assistance and support are normally assessed by the local council and make up a part of most care assessments. Medication support ranges from a prompt to take medication through to administration of medicines due to a person no longer being able to manage and understand their medication needs for example if they have dementia or Alzheimers.

Medication Assistance for Seniors

All of our carers receive medication training and have the skills that meet the recommendations set out by the City of Edinburgh Council and the Care Inspectorate.

Whether you use a home help care services company in Edinburgh, or you are caring for a family member at home, it is always good to take advice from a doctor or local nurse on the correct way to give medication assistance to seniors.

Family members are not qualified to give medical assistance, so below we have given a series of guidelines you can follow to make sure you are doing the best you can for your

loved ones.

10 Important Things to Understand When Providing Medication Assistance.

1. Prescription Instructions - The first step in administering medication safely is to follow the instructions from your doctor or GP clearly. Dosages are given for specific reasons and it is important to adhere to these.

2. Patient Identity: For a family member this is not so important, but for a care assistant it is vital to check the patient's name against the name on the label of the medication. We

know that this may sound like overkill, but we have seen in the past where two people are living in a house, both have medication and one has taken the tablet container or pill box

for the other person. Always double-check this.

3. Side Effects: Before administering any medication, be sure to read about any possible side effects that are expected. This allows you to understand if there might be a problem if a 

different side effect happens that is not shown on the medication leaflet. If this happens it means you can get emergency help if needed.

4. Medication Records: As we get older, we are likely to take not just one but a few different medications. A care company will log all medications administered by the care assistant.

If you are caring for a family member, it is important to do the same in case they need to go to the hospital, as you will likely be asked for this information.

5. Medication Interactions: It is important to understand how one medication might act when used with another. A GP will know this and will prescribe medications that do not conflict with one another. However, if you are caring for a family member at home, be sure to sit down with your GP to understand how these interactions work.

6. Proper Medication Storage: You must store as directed on the label, typically in a cool, dry place, but be sure to check for any medications that must be kept refrigerated at all times. Exposure to the wrong temperature can render the medication useless and is also dangerous if taken after not being stored properly.

7. Expiration Dates: As a home care provider, this is one of the errors we see regularly. Our carers make a point of checking dates, and make sure to not dispense out-of-date medications. Seniors do not always check the dates on medicines, and taking a medication that is out of date can cause harm.

8. Healthcare Communication: Medical professionals are your friends and it is important to have an open dialogue with doctors, pharmacists, and any nursing staff who support the senior you are taking care of. Keep them updated on any changes you see, and always reach out to the professionals for advice. The founder of 1st Focus Homecare is Scott Falconer who is a registered paramedic, so you can be assured that our own care providers in Edinburgh are thoroughly trained.

9. Medical Assistance Education: As a care at home provider, we have the knowledge and experience to provide education and advice on many aspects of administering medication. If you have a question about this important subject, then please reach out to us for advice. Our team will be happy to help.

10. Respect The Patient/Service User: Be mindful of the senior's wishes and preferences, such as the way in which they like to take their medication. Is it with their favourite beverage, or maybe with a particular type of food? Some medications can be difficult to swallow, so making it as easy as possible for the senior should be a priority.

Medication Assistance for Seniors

The above points are only a guideline for medication management for elderly seniors under your care.

Always seek professional advice from a qualified medical professional if you have questions about any topic relating to medication assistance.

We have been providing Edinburgh homecare services to seniors and their families for nearly a decade, and are only a phone call away at 0131 510 7878 if you need to discuss any medication care needs and support.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us or look at our FAQ page.



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