The holiday season is often portrayed as a time of joy and family gatherings, but for individuals living with illness or disabilities, it can present a unique set of challenges. Being unwell over Christmas, New Year’s, and the broader holiday period can exacerbate feelings of isolation, disrupt routines critical for managing health conditions, and place additional strain on both the individuals affected and their families.
Challenges of Being Unwell During the Holidays
Firstly, the festive season can intensify feelings of loneliness and separation. While others are celebrating, those who are unwell may feel left out of activities that they cannot participate in due to their health or a lack of support. This can be particularly acute for those who may have to watch from the sidelines, unable to join in the festivities.
Moreover, the holidays can disrupt the essential services that individuals depend on. Unlike VIVA Mutual, many other health and support services operate on reduced schedules and skeleton staffing during this period, which can lead to gaps in services. Frequently, the coordination between various care providers becomes more complex at this time of the year, and the continuity of support can suffer as a result.
Additionally, there is often an increase in demand for medical attention during the holidays, which can lead to longer waiting times for appointments and in emergency departments. This is a critical issue for those with chronic illnesses or disabilities who cannot afford to wait for extended periods.
The additional responsibilities among families should not be underestimated. People may experience heightened stress as they juggle holiday preparations with supporting their loved ones. The physical and emotional burden associated with the time of the year can increase during what is supposed to be a restful and happy time.
How a VIVA Home Nurse Can Provide Support
In this context, home nursing services, like those provided by VIVA, can be a vital resource. A home nurse offers professional medical care tailored to the individual’s needs, providing support in several key areas:
- Continuity of Care: Specialist disability home nurses ensure that the NDIS participant’s health management is consistent, even when regular services are unavailable. They can administer medications, perform medical procedures, and monitor vital signs, ensuring that the participant’s health does not deteriorate due to the holiday service gap.
- Emergency Support: Should a medical emergency arise; home nurses are trained to provide immediate care or stabilization until further medical treatment is available. This support can be crucial during the holidays when emergency services are often overwhelmed.
- Support for Families: The presence of a home nurse can offer welcome support for family members and this allows people to engage in holiday activities and relax, knowing their loved one is in capable hands.
- Emotional Support: Home nurses also provide emotional support to both participants and their families. They understand the emotional challenges that come with being unwell during the holidays and VIAV’s team offers compassionate care that goes beyond medical needs.
- Customised Care: Home nursing services can be tailored to fit the unique health and support requirements of the NDIS participant. Whether it’s assistance with daily living activities, wound care, or managing complex health conditions, VIVA’s experienced home nurses adjust their care to suit individual circumstances.
- Enhancing Participation: A home nurse can also help NDIS participants join in holiday activities and festivities by assisting with mobility, providing in-home support and ensuring that medical needs are addressed while away from home.
- Support Coordination: VIVA’s home nurses work in tandem with NDIS Support Coordinators and Health Professionals to create a seamless care experience. They communicate necessary information to medical people, participate in care planning, and help to navigate any challenges that may arise due to the participant’s health during the holiday period.
VIVA Supports the Support Coordinator Community Over This Challenging Time
NDIS Support Coordinators play a pivotal role in connecting participants with home nursing and disability support services. By being proactive and arranging for home nursing support over the holiday season, Support Coordinators can alleviate much of the stress and disruption experienced by NDIS participants and their families. We encourage all Support Coordinators to inquire about VIVA’s Home Nursing Services to ensure their clients’ medical needs are met and enhance the overall well-being of their participants during a time that can be both physically and emotionally challenging.
We will work with Support Coordinators to professionally assess the participant’s needs ahead of the holiday season to ensure that the appropriate level of home nursing and chosen disability supports are in place. This foresight can make all the difference, turning a potentially difficult holiday season into a time of comfort, support, and reduced stress.