HOME CARE FOR THE EL­DERLY

If you are look­ing for a day care for older peo­ple when you are away, take help from Na­tional Med­i­cal Ser­vices.

HI Weekly - - FRONT PAGE - STORY SHRUTHI NAIR PHO­TOS SHABIN E, SHUTTERSTOCK +968 2209 4265 oman@rochester­well­ness.com — shruthi@time­so­fo­man.com

Blessed are those who haven’t been in a painful ac­ci­dent or had to en­dure the phys­i­cal or emo­tional pain of cop­ing with a pro­longed disease. While we might have met a num­ber of pa­tients and sur­vivors who have re­counted their or­deals with a for­lorn melan­choly in their eyes, there are many among them who could be hav­ing a hard time deal­ing with var­i­ous is­sues rang­ing from post-trau­matic stress, men­tal health prob­lems, loss, or even old age. They might seem like they are in the right frame of mind and get­ting along with life, but are they?

Re­cently, we heard about Na­tional Med­i­cal Ser­vices, Med­i­cal Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­tre an or­gan­i­sa­tion in Oman that deals with such pa­tients and to learn more about what they do, we de­cided to pay them a visit.

Nes­tled in an open area of Mad­i­nat Al Ilam, Na­tional Med­i­cal Ser­vices, Med­i­cal and Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­tre’s, main gate opens to four vil­las — four warm and wel­com­ing homes.

I walked straight through the door in front of me and found a few men sit­ting on a sofa and chat­ting. One of them, who was on a wheel­chair, came up to me and said that he worked there and while we waited for the right per­son to ac­quaint us with the place we started talk­ing to him and he ex­plained how he was once a pa­tient and now works as a re­cep­tion­ist there. I was soon asked to go to the 4th villa where I met Mer­lyn, the man­ager, who ex­plained all about the ser­vices they pro­vide.

Na­tional Med­i­cal Ser­vices, Med­i­cal and Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­tre Mus­cat, is a fa­cil­ity that pro­vides spe­cialised non­in­va­sive re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion ser­vices in­clud­ing med­i­cal con­sul­ta­tions, nurs­ing care, nu­tri­tion ser­vices, phys­i­cal ther­apy, speech and lan­guage ther­apy, and more to chil­dren, adults, and se­nior cit­i­zens in an en­vi­ron­ment that is more like a home than a hos­pi­tal. The pa­tients, called guests or vis­i­tors here, can spend some qual­ity time re­cov­er­ing from their dis­eases and its side ef­fects com­fort­ably by tak­ing their own time.

The cen­tre has var­i­ous fa­cil­i­ties rang­ing from pri­vate rooms, gyms, speech ther­apy, and med­i­ca­tion rooms which the guests can use de­pend­ing on their needs. The 32 mem­ber team in­clud­ing doc­tors, nurses, man­agers, and helpers make sure that the guests feel very much at home and re­alise that what they need more than any­thing is to feel that there are peo­ple around who care and to in­stil the strength and will­ing­ness to fight. They also pro­vide a range of aids in­clud­ing cus­tomised pros­thet­ics, wheel­chairs, and special footwear that the guests can buy or use.

Apart from pal­lia­tive care for the el­derly, Na­tional Med­i­cal Ser­vices, also serves as a day care for older men and women who need to be taken care of. It is ex­tremely pleas­ing to see that even to­day, in the so-called mod­ern age, there are peo­ple look­ing af­ter their old par­ents, grand­par­ents, and in-laws. How­ever, there are times when they feel stranded and bound es­pe­cially when they have to travel. At such times, a home­care cen­tre like this comes to the res­cue where it hap­pily takes in guests and keeps them for days, weeks, or even months.

The guests are pro­vided with ther­apy ses­sions, med­i­cal con­sul­ta­tions, ac­com­mo­da­tion, and food but most im­por­tantly, as Meryl points out, they are en­cour­aged to come out of their rooms and in­ter­act with fel­low vis­i­tors and guests of their own age, es­pe­cially in the evening at the out­door Ma­jlis where they can con­verse freely un­der the stars.

Such re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion cen­tres are a ne­ces­sity in to­day’s so­ci­ety in or­der to help man­age one’s emo­tional and so­cial needs. It is also nec­es­sary for the care­givers to have a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of tak­ing care of those who have un­der­gone treat­ment and re­quire op­ti­mum af­ter care or just the el­derly whose phys­i­cal ca­pa­bil­i­ties are di­min­ish­ing by the day due to age. How­ever, it is the flex­i­bil­ity of this fa­cil­ity that makes it more at­trac­tive. Peo­ple of any age group, re­cov­er­ing from any disease can avail the ser­vices on a daily, weekly or monthly ba­sis. They can ei­ther be there with a fam­ily mem­ber or be dropped there alone, can go as vis­i­tors for a few hours or choose to stay as guests. The home­care pro­vides the best of both worlds, where the at­mos­phere is homely and at the same time you have easy ac­cess to med­i­cal staff and fa­cil­i­ties. As an in­dus­try, re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion and health­care ser­vices is an ex­tremely es­sen­tial seg­ment of the so­ci­ety. They are in high de­mand and could help in shap­ing trends, men­tal­ity, and ap­proach to­wards health­care in a coun­try.

Na­tional Med­i­cal Ser­vices (Med­i­cal Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­tre) Mus­cat Way 1557, Villa 2768 Mad­i­nat Al Ilam, Mus­cat

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