The Best Ways to Incorporate Medication Tracking in Senior Care

Senior CareEven the nicest senior care worker will step on a few toes by treating medication like a chore, or by giving patients the attitude that they’re being naughty by missing a pill or two. Elderly people are adults. Many still have full comprehension of the world around them. They are not small children or too simple to know what they’d like to do. Sometimes they are missing meds because they feel pressured, so making the experience as normal and friendly as possible is important.

Be Sympathetic

According to one study, nearly 40 percent of elderly patients regularly take 10 medications or more. It isn’t hard to see why they’d want to skip a few doses. You don’t have to patronize someone by frowning each time they have to take meds, but accepting that these people have a raw deal can go a long way in working med tracking into their routines without causing more problems. Once you realize their reasons for not taking medications, it can also be much easier to point out the opposition.

Be Direct

You don’t have to be rude or accusatory to inform an elderly patient they’ve used more or less meds than necessary. In fact, this is likely the best way to introduce the topic. Talk to patients about how hard it is for anyone to keep track of drug schedules and that part of your job is making their lives easier. Let them know you’re going to start marking usage so they know if they’ve gone off-track.

Be Honest with Patients and with Yourself

Sometimes, tracking medication use isn’t just writing down results. Reports are made too. It’s important for your patients to know how this information is going to be used. Ultimately, you work for them and they’re in charge of their own health. Lectures aren’t automatically a part of your job. Often, especially in the beginning of a medication tracking program, it’s best to inform your patient when there’s an issue. Unless you have to file a report, don’t expand on the topic other than exploring what you can do to encourage sticking closer to the schedule in the future.

Have more questions about senior care and medication tracking?  Contact a non-medical home care aide today.