Activities of Daily Living can be looked at in three ways. 1. Through the eyes of the actual person (the Elderly client/customer), 2. Through the eyes of the Nurse/Decision Maker, and 3. Through the eyes of the caregiver who assists the Elderly client.
What is an activity of daily living (ADL)? Imagine yourself in bed and only the left side of your body works and you are right-handed. You need to get up to go to work, so this usually means going to the bathroom, a shower and shave, right? You then need to get dressed and eat, before you drive to work.
- Through the eyes of the Nurse or Decision-Maker, aka management, an ADL is an opportunity to measure how much assistance this new client is going to need.
A functional assessment is necessary and the goal in providing care is the maintenance or promotion of ambulation(walking) and independence. Measuring the amount of ADL’s a client can do, assists in measuring cost from a management view and the amount of help necessary to meet those needs diagnosed by the nurse and team.
We must remember reimbursement for physicians who work with the Elderly is low.
- Through the eyes of the ACTUAL RESIDENT, the person who we are responsible for in our duties, I cannot speak about. I can only say, it is our job (so that when we need healthcare) to make healthcare with the greatest quality, at a low cost, to serve the greatest numbers. But in truth, you only get two out of three.
Remember, the more activities of daily living you can do alone, the lower your cost of entering a nursing home, assisted living or senior living. Thank you to Quality Care in Geriatrics Settings by Paul R Katz, Robert L Kane and Mathy D Mezey whom I used 2 sentences from their book!