The fact is that registered nurses (RN’s) typically do not go to patients’ homes many times a day to administer medication routinely. There is a shortage of nurses and this would be very expense and certainly impractical.
Home health aides (HHA’s) can give injections to diabetic patients and emergency medical injection of epinephrine, which is used for treating anaphylaxis.
The amount of duties performed by home health aides that provide routine or pre-filled medications that will be easy to administer, including injections of insulin or epinephrine, will be routinely dictated by federal regulations.
For home health aides able to perform injections, the rules will require that the aide receive at least a six-month training course in order to use the medications.
For all other duties, home health aides can perform them under state law or under federal law.
In New York, the acceptability of HHA administration injection is only permitted in special circumstances. Advanced Home Health Aides in New York (AHHA) can arrange specialized procedures, including injections of insulin or epinephrine, in line with regulations.
And in California, the task of giving insulin by a HHA cannot occur as this is one of the many functions not allowed to be delegated by an RN.
Other Duties a HHA Can and Cannot Do
Diabetes and Home Health Care
In the United States, diabetes is a continuing health problem. According to the American Diabetes Association, about 9 percent of the population have some form of the disease, and that percentage among seniors is higher than 25 percent. Treating diabetes can be a challenging regimen requiring constant monitoring.
Older adults are at a greater risk for developing diabetic complications, such as lower-extremity amputation, myocardial infarction, visual impairment, and renal failure. They are more prone to encounter an emergency room as a result of hypoglycemia.
Routine, careful follow-up is required for all treatments of diabetes, making it even more difficult for older people to stay on top of their illness. Medications are difficult for seniors suffering from mental decline, such as dementia, to take as directed by the physician.
You should fully understand that caregiving is a substantial project on its own, but a home health aide can do the tasks of a caretaker dealing with someone with diabetes.
Treatment of Diabetes for Elderly Folks
One of the discouraging aspects for diabetics is that the treatment of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes is highly dependent on daily routine.
The type 1 diabetes specialist may have the client require up to four blood sugar checks per day. This might be achieved through pinprick blood tests or a glucose meter.
Type 1 diabetes is treated by injections of synthetic insulin, which are typically administered by syringe or insulin pen. A pump may be fitted to the outside of the body with a catheter that is connected to a reservoir of insulin. The pump is either programmed to administer steady doses of insulin or administers insulin in proportion to the glucose levels of the body.
In type 2 diabetes, the regularity of blood testing is less significant than the maintenance of a healthy diet and regular exercise. For less severe instances, seniors might be able to manage type 2 diabetes by altering their diets and engaging in physical activity.
Importance of HHA Giving Insulin
Patients can also find help from diabetic patients. Many diabetics cannot monitor their blood sugar levels or inject themselves with insulin.
Allowing the home health aide to give insulin will enable them to stay at home, opposed to going to a nursing home.
What HHA’s CAN and CAN’T Do!
Download this brand new guide on what home health aides can and cannot do. The rules have changed so don’t get caught off guard. Know your limits and the law.