Sophia Aksenchuk, University Health Network, Canada
The World Health Organization predicts COPD will become the third leading cause of death worldwide by 2030. COPD affects approximately 3 million Canadians, with an additional 3 million who have not been formally diagnosed. COPD is the second most common cause for hospitalizations in Canada and accounts for the highest rates of hospital readmission among major chronic illnesses in Canada. Thus, it is of vital importance to address the needs of elderly patients with COPD in order to balance costs, reduce admission and readmission rates, and promote quality of life. The purpose of this poster presentation is to share the current practice of care for elderly patients admitted to a General Internal Medicine unit with COPD. The presentation will outline what the current gaps and challenges are with regards to providing quality nursing care to elderly patients with COPD.
The Heath Quality Ontario’s (2017) Quality Standards for COPD were adapted to the care delivery model and practice standards of the General Internal Medicine units in an acute care hospital based in Toronto. The COPD Quality Based Procedure pathway was developed, implemented, and reinforced by an interprofessional team of allied health leaders, unit managers, clinical directors, and physicians. Despite the significant progress noted with regards to care delivery, readmission rates, and transition support, there is significant potential for growth and improvement in adapting the pathway to improve the quality of care for elderly patients with COPD.
Common trends, learnings, and barriers as observed by the Transitional Care Specialist within the interprofessional team are shared in this presentation along with future directions and intentions as to how we can meet and address these limitations. 3 critical points in care where improvements can be and are being made include – (1) Promoting independence and reinforcing inhaler education; (2) Early follow -ups with a specialist and/or family doctor; (3) Support patients and caregivers beyond discharge (e.g. H&CC, TIPs, HAL).
Attendees will be able to learn what the current practice standards are in Ontario as informed by the Ministry of Health, what barriers and limitations are observed with regards to implementing these standards for patients with dementia and how care may be improved moving forward. As an interprofessional team with patients and caregivers we can enable and empower people to manage their chronic conditions at home and in the community as they prefer.