Combatting Emergencies in Elderly Patients: Developing Positive Outcomes with Geriatric Emergency Medicine

Combatting Emergencies

and Health

As our population ages, geriatric emergency medicine has become an ever more important endeavor for improving seniors’ health outcomes. Despite the challenges posed by providing medical care for elderly patients in an acute setting, medical teams are now better prepared to face aging-related emergencies with increased understanding of individual patient needs and new approaches to healthcare.

Challenges for Elderly Patients in a Medical Emergency

Adverse health outcomes and disability in elderly patients present a double challenge to doctors and nurses caring for seniors facing an acute medical emergency. Elderly patients are more likely to suffer from cardiovascular diseases, lung disorders, and dementia, as well as chronic physical and psychological conditions, making their age group the most likely to be admitted to the hospital during a medical crisis. Moreover, elderly patients with multiple comorbidities often require longer-term treatment in order to ensure the best possible outcome of their episodes of care.

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Improving Outcomes with Geriatric Emergency Medicine

Given the individual challenges faced in meeting the needs of elderly patients in the acute care setting, providing a comprehensive care response using a team approach is essential for positive health outcomes. In a geriatric emergency setting, medical teams can draw from the full range of resources and expertise to develop a plan of care tailored to the individual patient.

Geriatric Emergency Medical Care

The approach to geriatric emergency medical care necessitates understanding of the older patient’s medical and functional requirements, including physical and emotional needs. This comprehensive approach involves psychologists, social workers, nurses, and environmental health professionals who are skilled in caring for the elderly. With their expertise, the medical team is better positioned to ensure a positive course of care by focusing on preventing age-related falls and mobility issues, evaluating cognitive functioning and psychological stability, and preventing malnutrition and dehydration.

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Benefits of Geriatric Emergency Medicine

By utilizing the full range of health professionals and experience, geriatric emergency medicine and care teams are better positioned to meet the individual needs of elderly patients in the acute care setting to ensure positive health outcomes. With a team approach, medical personnel can develop a plan of care designed to account for each aspect of the patient’s physical, emotional, and cognitive needs, from initial assessment through the period of active treatment and follow-up care.

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Ensuring Positive Health Outcomes for Elderly Patients

The benefits of geriatric emergency medicine can be further enhanced with the effective utilization of best practices aimed at improving health outcomes in elderly patients. These may include the adoption of geriatric-friendly policies in the Emergency Department and Intensive Care Unit and the establishment of improved monitoring and communication protocols between intra- and interdisciplinary staff to ensure timely referrals and diagnoses and maximum attention to patients’ comfort and safety.

By understanding the medical, physical and emotional needs of elderly patients in the acute care setting and developing a comprehensive individualized plan of care, medical teams are better positioned to ensure the best possible health outcomes for elderly patients in a medical emergency.

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