Changing the dementia diagnosis dialog
Caregivers have new ways to talk about dementia.
The Alzheimer’s Association has released a Cognitive Impairment Care Planning Toolkit that offers information and best practices for physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants to help patients with Alzheimer’s and other dementias.
“For far too long, individuals were given a diagnosis and little else. We have worked with thousands of families who have had a better experience living through dementia because they had plans in place,” said Beth Kallmyer, Alzheimer’s Association Vice President of Constituent Services, in a press release. “Proper care planning results in fewer hospitalizations, fewer emergency room visits and better management of medication—all of which improves the quality of life for both patients and caregivers, and helps manage overall care costs.”
The toolkit includes an overview, access to validated diagnostic tools such as the Mini-Cog and the Dementia Severity Rating Scale, safety assessment guide, caregiver profile checklist, end of life checklist and patient and caregiver resources. The toolkit is available at alz.org/careplanning.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) now covers cognitive and functional assessments and care planning. Medicare will pay for clinical visit to create a comprehensive care plan that allows caregivers to develop a personalized approach to managing cognitive loss and identify appropriate community support services to improve outcomes, maintain quality of life, control costs and end-of-life care planning through code G0505.
Nicole was Senior Editor at I Advance Senior Care and Long Term Living Magazine 2015-2017. She has a Journalism degree from Kent State University and is finalizing a master’s degree in Information Architecture and Management. She has extensive studies in the digital user experience and in branding online media. She has worked as an editor and writer for various B2B publications, including Business Finance.