The Hopkins Fire Department works with the Park Nicollet Foundation to keep seniors safe in their homes with the Senior Safety Post-Hospital Discharge Visit Program.
To ensure patients are able to care for themselves and are in a safe environment between hospital discharge and their follow-up care, Hopkins Fire Department provides patients with a post-discharge firefighter visit 12 to 24 hours after a hospital discharge.
During the Visit
During the visit, firefighters ensure that patients:
Understand how to take their medication
Have a follow-up visit with a medical professional scheduled and transportation to that appointment
Understand the symptoms to be aware of and who to call if they are in need
Have enough food to take their medicine
Have hazard-free homes, replacing all non-working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms
The Senior Safety Post Hospital Discharge Program is a unique example of community collaboration. Seniors benefit from the program through decreased readmission rates, increased patient engagement, and a better understanding of their care and transition plan.
In addition to the benefits to seniors, the program reduces cost to fire departments, preventing costly emergency responses to health care concerns rather than fire calls. It also allows firefighters to build relationships with community members, while improving community safety.
Food shelves are also eager to participate in this program because it allows them to get food to under-served, isolated seniors who would not otherwise be helped.