Subsidized therapy for those coping with illness and loss

Tishkofet Ma’agan (Life’s Door) offers subsidized therapy for those coping with illness and loss. The basic subsidized rate is 180 NIS per session, but further subsidies are available and each client’s needs and means are assessed individually.

For more information, contact Margo: mhelman@tishkofet.co.il, 02-631-2635.

Tishkofet Therapy Program

Special Services Benefit (Attendance Allowance)

Information about the Special Services Benefit (Attendance Allowance) in English! 

A Special Services Benefit (Attendance Allowance) is paid to certain adults with medical disability who require significant assistance from another person in performing daily activities, or who need constant supervision to prevent them from posing a risk to their own lives or the lives of others.

Please note: The National Insurance Institute refers to the Special Services Benefit (a direct translation of the Hebrew קצבת שירותים מיוחדים) as an “Attendance Allowance”. 

As part of our on-going collaboration with Kol-Zchut, we are proud to have translated and published this easy-to-read, critical and unique resource of information that was not previously available in English. You can either view the guide below or click here to follow an external link. 

Related information:

 

Not familiar with The Shira Pransky Project?

The Shira Pransky Project was founded to help English speakers in Israel better navigate the Israeli healthcare system and make use of the rights and services that are out there.

 

If this information was helpful to you, please enable us to help others by supporting the project:
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To your health ! לבריאות

The Ins and Outs of Elderly Patient Hospitalization

By Esther Parnes and Michal Naor

Mr. Schwartz’s Cough

Mr. Schwartz celebrated his 85th birthday in the department of internal medicine. It was his second hospitalization in the last month. He started coughing at the beginning of the winter and medical tests showed nothing. After a week’s hospitalization Mr. Schwartz was sent home, though he continued to cough and reduce his varied activities. 

Mr. Schwartz has been a pensioner for more than 10 years and his time is dedicated to his many hobbies: photography, crafts, hikes, driving and social gatherings. The CT scan done in the emergency room showed pulmonary embolism in both of his lungs. After another week of hospitalization, Mr. Schwartz went home with a selection of drugs: blood thinners and diuretics with the hope that now he would be able to return to his formerly active lifestyle. However the medicines didn’t help and his condition further deteriorated.

Although Mr. Schwartz was still able to walk on his own when he was admitted for his third hospitalization, after two days in the department of internal medicine he could no longer move his body or breathe independently and was transferred to intensive care. An ultrasound showed that there was serious damage to the right side of the heart, and the words “cardiac insufficiency” (aka heart failure) fell upon Mr. Schwartz, his wife, and his children, completely changing their lives.

Hospital routine

Cardiac insufficiency and other typical ailments of the elderly often require repeated hospitalizations, changing the daily routine of the spouse and other family members and necessitating a reorganization of family resources.

Despite the supportive medical care in the hospital, there is a physical and psychological “price” for the hospitalization. Being removed from the home and a familiar environment, dealing with the loss of various physical capabilities, and worrying what the future might bring can sometimes be the cause of confusion, loss of spirits, and even depression.

Here are some tips for handling these issues:

  1. Notify the medical staff about any changes in the psychological state of the patient in order to get proper treatment in this regard.
  2. It is important that the family be at the patient’s hospital bedside. Remember that the hospital staff with all its good will is understaffed and unable to attend to all of the patients’ needs. Without someone nearby the patient can feel helpless and requests for assistance may go unanswered.
  3. Dividing the burden among the family members can help the patient greatly. There is also the possibility of hiring nursing care for various times of day or night when family is unable to be available.
  4. It is advisable to bring along reading material, magazines, or a laptop computer in order to make the hospital stay more pleasant (but one should also take precautions to prevent possible theft of valuables). It is also possible to rent a television for the patient from hospital services.
  5. It is important to make contact with the social worker at the beginning of the hospitalization and utilize his/her services. Every department in the hospital has a social worker whose job is to assist the patient while he/she is hospitalized, and also to make certain arrangements upon his/her release.
  6. Make use of physical therapists and their services, which are available in many hospital departments to help patients regain their physical functioning, including breathing rehabilitation.

Support for the patient’s spouse

The life of the patient’s spouse is fraught with many ups and downs. His/her absence from the home and the frequent visits to the hospital often cause a decline in both physical and emotional states. Worry about the patient can sometimes cause the spouse to neglect his/her own health. In this area, too, the family needs to be on alert to the condition of the spouse.

Release from the hospital to rehabilitative care

Following hospitalization, some patients need continued medical supervision and rehabilitation. The social worker of the hospital department will suggest an appropriate care facility for the patient about to be released and will contact this facility.  Families that confer with relevant professionals, such as a gerontological consultant, receive more in depth information and assistance in proper decision making regarding the continued treatment of the patient. These care facilities are paid for by kupat cholim. The staff in these facilities include: doctors, nurses, social workers, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, and orderlies to help with patients’ needs.

Families whose loved one is to be released to rehabilitative care should note the following:

  • The family should act as soon as the hospital suggests continued treatment to facilitate the transfer to a suitable care facility. Due to lack of space in rehabilitative facilities in Israel, there is a waiting list.
  • It is important to note that the needs of the family (e.g. location of facility and accessibility) do not always match the criteria for the hospital staff recommending a facility.
  • Visit the facility in order to choose the one that is most appropriate.
  • Proper preparation on the part of the family of the patient and consulting with relevant professionals can ease the stress of the situation and may even be a deciding factor in the healing process.

Mr. Schwartz’s recovery 

Mr. Schwartz’s situation continued to improve as a result of the dedicated and professional care that he received in the hospital, and at the continuing care facility to which he was released. Upon arrival at home, special preparations were needed, details of which will be discussed in the next article.

Esther Parnes and Michal Naor are gerontological consultants. They can be reached by calling 054-765-6685 or 050-838-9490, or via the  אילת גיל הזהב Facebook page

Our strict contributed content guidelines ensure useful, informative and non-solicitous submitted content. Opinions expressed in this article are the authors’ own.

 

Related:

For related information check out our “Counseling Service for the Elderly from Bituach Leumi” and “Home Care from the Kupat Cholim” pages.

For more information on rights related to seniors, check out our All Rights Index (which is searchable and browseable), especially the Old Age and Aging Portal and Senior Health Portal.

Counseling Service for the Elderly from Bituach Leumi

 Senior Sign

Who? What? Where?

The National Insurance Institute (Bituach Leumi) operates a Counseling Service for the Elderly which is designed to assist the elderly and their families in resolving problems they may be facing.

The service is available to any elderly person in Israel who requires assistance, and is offered in all Bituach Leumi branches throughout the country. Click here for contact information.

The service is provided by retired volunteers who are trained in courses given at universities and colleges to provide counseling, guidance and practical assistance to the elderly.

 

Services

Call Center

The Counseling Service for the Elderly operates a special telephone line for the elderly and their families on aging-related issues. The service, which is provided by specially-trained volunteers, operates Sunday – Thursday from 8:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m (you can leave a message if there is no response) and is available in the following languages:

English – 02-6463404
Hebrew – 02-6463400
Arabic – 02-6463401
Russian – 02-6463402
Amharic – 02-6463403

Counseling for the elderly and their families

The elderly and their families can obtain information, assistance, guidance and support related to claiming rights and services for the elderly from Bituach Leumi and other organizations, offices and service providers.

Regular home visits

Volunteers visit the elderly on a regular basis once a month, for about two hours. The visits are only made with the consent of the elderly person and at his/her request. Through these home visits, the volunteers forge a personal, understanding, accepting and sympathetic relationship which is so important to the elderly, to improve their emotional and economic situation. These regular visits help the elderly, reduce their loneliness and improve their lives in general.

One-time home visits

Seniors who may be at risk or in distress are identified by means of one-time home visits, which are coordinated in advance with the elderly person or his/her family. The target population includes those defined as being at risk due to impaired functioning and dependence on others, advanced age (above the age of 80) or family status (widowed). The information is obtained from the Bituach Leumi database. Those found to be in need of assistance, such as referral to a care facility, some kind of intervention or regular home visits, receive continued care and follow-up.

Support groups

The types of support groups vary from one branch to another, and are established according to the unique needs of the local population, such as the elderly blind, spouses of long-term care patients, the middle generation who are coping with the age-related crises of their elderly parents, etc.

Support groups for widows and widowers

There are support groups for widows and widowers at every branch. The main purpose of these groups is to provide emotional assistance during the crisis and support in preparing to return to their normal lives. The group facilitators are social workers and professionals in the field of elder counseling at the branches. The groups contain up to 15 participants and the meetings continue for about three months, once a week for two hours each time. Participation in the groups serves as a significant anchor for the participants – they share with other group members the process of working through their grief and coping with their personal loss, and they acquire the spiritual strength and personal validation they need to return to a normal life.

 

For more information on Bituach Leumi’s Counseling Service for the Elderly, click here.

For more information on rights related to seniors, check out our All Rights Index (which is searchable and browseable), especially the Old Age and Aging Portal and Senior Health Portal.

 

If this information was helpful to you, please enable us to help others by supporting the project:
 www.shirapranskyproject.org/donate/ 

Long-Term Care Benefit

https://www.flickr.com/photos/papalars/1425443134/

Information about the Long-Term Care Benefit in English! 

A Long-Term Care Benefit is given to people who have reached retirement age, live at home in the community, and need help with daily activities (such as getting dressed, getting bathed, eating, mobility in the home, etc.), as well as elderly people who need supervision in order to prevent them from endangering themselves, or their surroundings (such as people with decreased mental faculties like Alzheimer’s disease patients who are liable to endanger themselves or their surroundings if left home alone).

The benefit is generally provided in the form of services, and is usually not monetary in nature!

As part of our on-going collaboration with Kol-Zchut, we are proud to have translated and published a Rights Guide for the Mentally Ill and Their Families. While a number of the links in the guide still lead to Hebrew content, it is an easy-to-read, critical and unique resource of information that was not previously available in English. You can either view the guide below or click here to follow an external link. 

Related information:

 

Not familiar with AACI’s Shira Pransky Project?

AACI’s Shira Pransky Project was founded to help English speakers in Israel better navigate the Israeli healthcare system and make use of the rights and services that are out there.

 

If this information was helpful to you, please enable us to help others by supporting the project:
Donate Now!

 

 

To your health ! לבריאות

Home Care from the Kupat Cholim

home_heart

About this Benefit

All of the kupot cholim (health plans) offer home care services to patients who can’t get all of the medical services they need due to difficulty leaving the home. A full range of medical services are provided with home visits from doctors, nurses, and social workers, as well as paramedical providers, like physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech therapists, and others.

Who is Entitled

Home care services are intended for patients who are confined to their homes temporarily or permanently due to their medical/physical condition and are not able to receive services in the kupat cholim branches.  For Example: 

  • Patients with chronic illness
  • Patients returning home after hospitalization
  • Oncology patients
  • The elderly

How to Get it

Individuals may be referred to the Home Care Unit (יחידה לטיפול בית or יחידה להמשך טיפול)  by hospital staff, a family doctor, local social services or by contacting the unit directly. Contact information can be obtained from your local branch secretary or your kupat cholim’s information hotline.

Cancer patients may be entitled to additional home care through the Israel Cancer Association. Click here for more information.

Resources

 

If this information was helpful to you, please enable us to help others by supporting the project:
 www.shirapranskyproject.org/donate/