Aging is known to occur at different rates in different people. In itself it is not a disease. It is however widely agreed that aging increases susceptibility to many disease conditions.
The percentage of elderly population is increasing everywhere in the world including Nigeria. It is estimated that older adults comprise at least 30 percent of patients in typical Family Medicine outpatient practices, 60 percent in hospital practices, and 95 percent in nursing home and home care practices.
The Critical issue in quality of life of elderly is the elderly person’s FUNCTIONAL STATUS. As a result, functional assessment is paramount in the evaluation of elderly. Function is an interaction of multiple aspect of patient's life. It takes into consideration the physical, psychological, social and family aspects of a person’s life. The care of the elderly is multidisciplinary and as such the assessment must keep this in perspective. The care of the elderly requires management of broad range of information; medical, psychological, social circumstances and living environment.
Benefits Of A Geriatric Care Service
Primarily to support the underserved Geriatric population in this district.
- It helps to raise geriatric healthcare awareness among the elderly and their caregivers.
Scope Of Health Related Issues
Generally, 7% - 8% of them have severe cognitive impairment, 20% suffers from health and visual impairment. 30% of this population have problem with mobility; coupled with age related structural changes. The prevalent health conditions in the elderly are:
Non- Communicable Diseases
Hypertension, type II DM, Arthritis, back pain, Sleep disorders, Chronic Obstructive Airway Disease (COAD) , cancers, cataract, glaucoma, heart diseases, Cerebro-vascular accident (Strokes), Erectile Dysfunction, Mental health problems, Osteoporosis.
Tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, food poisoning, dysentery, malaria, urinary tract infection (UTI), conjunctivitis, Pneumonia, scabies
Falls, Incontinence, Late life depression, Dementia
Dietary/ Nutritional problems
Undernutrition, inability to eat (poor dentition, missing teeth, blunted sense of taste etc), overnutrition (overweight and obesity).
Solitary living, neglect, abuse (emotional, physical, financial), shared care among children, caregiver’s fatigue, Social issues in relation to acute care, chronic disease management, rehabilitation, dementia care and palliative care, end-of-life care, living will, inheritance issues.
Influenza and Pneumococcal vaccination -Influenza vaccine helps protect against severe episodes of pneumonia, bronchitis, COAD exacerbation
Tobacco, alcohol, certain medications (e.g. sleeping pills)
Decrease in sharpness of vision (acuity), decrease in ability to judge distances, decrease in ability to discriminate between certain colors, decrease in ability to function in low light levels and adapt to dark and decrease in ability to adapt to glare. Cataract, glaucoma, pterygium, macular degeneration, hypertensive retinopathy, diabetic retinopathy, and blindness are some common eye conditions in the elderly.
Conductive hearing loss, sensorineural hearing loss, and deafness.
Our Unique Mode Of Care In Lily Hospitals Limited
Receiving hands: Friendly and extremely courteous, thorough initial consultation.
- Baseline tests- PCV (Serial thereafter), FBC, FBG, FLP, Urinalysis, Serum protein, ECG, Chest X-ray-PA View (± LFT, glycatedHb).
- Screening tests- Mammography, PSA + Rectal exam, Faecal occult blood with or without colonoscopy.
- Vaccination for the elderly: Haemophilus Influenza vaccine, Pneumococcal vaccine.
- Home visit/Domiciliary care by Nurses (Doctor’s visit on Special request).
Geriatric care is an important component of comprehensive health care. All of us need to be more awake to its importance and as such afford our loved ones the opportunity of enjoying a better quality of life even at their old age. Lily Geriatric Outpatient Clinic holds every Thursday at Lily Hospitals Limited between 9:30am and 3:30pm. Urgent geriatric consultation can however be arranged anytime from Monday to Friday while emergency geriatric care is available 24 hours, everyday. Home visit/Domiciliary can also be arranged for interested clients.