Filling the Home Healthcare Void

July 2018

Four years ago, on May 145h, 2014, Clover Senior Care was born. Carrie Dragoo Tidwell, a registered nurse, was working as an RN Home Health Case Manager for a skilled company and she loved it. However, she soon realized that once she had to discharge the patient from home health after they met their skilled goals, some of the patients still needed assistance in their homes. She also found that their options were limited. “I wanted to do more so I started Clover Senior Care, a non-skilled personal service agency (PSA agency) to be able Filling the Home Healthcare Voidto provide care in the home for those people that wanted to remain in their homes.”

Tidwell isn’t just another person that started a home health agency. She has extensive experience in nursing with her career beginning as a Cardiac Nurse. She was a clinical instructor where she taught at Ivy Tech. She also served as an occupational health nurse and nurse recruiter for Repucare, as well as becoming a home health RN Case Manager. Tidwell’s vast nursing experience sets her apart from other PSA agencies.

The three main components to CLOVER SENIOR CARE are:

  • Non-Skilled Home Health Care which consists of caregivers that are trained to provide care to the elderly. They provide this at the client’s homes, independent living facilities, assisted living facilities and sometimes even at skilled facilities. Services include, but are not limited to, light housekeeping, errands, taking clients to appointments, running errands, grocery shopping, meal preparation, medication reminders, laundry, incontinent care, mobility assist and
    bathing assist. They can also sit with someone
    with dementia if they tend to wander.
  • RN Case Management which includes home
    safety evaluations, care plans, medication
    management, disease process education,
    head to toe assessments, accompaniments to
    doctor’s appointments, and advocacy between
    the doctor, the family, and the client.
  • Home Transitions, as the name suggests, is
    where a client is transitioning from one home
    to another (if they want to downsize) or to an
    independent living facility, assisted living facility,
    or skilled facility.

Tidwell states that, “Sometimes clients may not have any family members to assist them in their transition needs due to them living out of state or the family’s own work schedules prohibits the amount of time and support needed. This is where Clover transitions comes in. We will go into the homes, take pictures and take what we can into the new home to recreate it and make it as comfortable and familiar as possible, especially for those clients with mild to moderate dementia. It is very comforting to have continuity, consistency, and similarities. Clover transition specialists come into the home and assist with organizing, de-cluttering, packing, cleaning, hiring movers, transferring cable services, turning off utilities and or transferring the utility services, making the address changes, setting up appointments with doctor’s to get the proper test done if required for the facility they are moving into, setting up attorney appointments for POA and living will assistance, contacting realtors to get their home sold if needed, assistance with paying bills and providing bookkeeping needs if necessary. Clover home transitions can make this life changing event less ‘life changing.’”

Tidwell works diligently to educate her caregivers on how to provide excellent care of their client in their home which means recognizing symptoms that could possibly prevent hospitalizations and rehabilitations in facilities. Tidwell further stated, “One of the first things I began to identify as a home health nurse was the prevalence in the elderly to get urinary tract infection’s (UTI’s). UTI’s can be very difficult to recognize if you don’t know what you are looking for, but very simple to test for and diagnose. If UTI’s are not caught early the infection can be very harmful to the elderly and can potentially even lead to death. The symptoms of a UTI present differently in the elderly than they do in other age groups. For example, a younger person’s symptoms may be difficulty & pain upon urination, pain in the lower abdomen, and general malaise while the symptoms in elderly might include a very slight cognitive change (confusion), may have a fall, or be lethargic (weak) and become dehydrated. UTI’s in the elderly are more prevalent for a few reasons: they don’t feel safe enough to take a shower on their own, they don’t wipe properly, or change their disposable undergarments often enough to save money and they don’t want to drink very much liquids because they feel it will make them urinate more often.

If the symptoms are recognized early on either by family members or other caregivers/health care providers, we could potentially prevent hospitalizations, rehabilitations, and even more fatal outcomes. My motto here is cross your t’s and dot your i’s with UTI’s.”

Equally important, Tidwell educates her staff regularly about checking the client’s feet. “The elderly can have difficulties bending over to reach their feet, to clean their feet regularly and may not notice that they have an open wound,” she said. “The feet can clue us in to many things. If one is diabetic we need to pay special attention to the feet due to circulation concerns. If one has congestive heart failure there could be an increase in swelling in the lower extremities/feet. Noticing these symptoms early on can prevent wounds, infections, and other healthcare problems. My motto here is Greet the feet. Take 3 extra minutes to take those shoesand socks off and examine the feet. It could save a life and or prevent someone from having a bad infection that could lead to an amputation.”
Tidwell says these are things that her staff of 60 caregivers are educated to do along with the day-to-
day care that is necessary based on the clients care plan. “I am extremely proud of our dedicated team and the life enhancement they provide to our clients. Our goal is to keep the client in their home as long as possible, as long as they are happy, safe, and healthy.”

Clover Senior Care is Medicaid Waiver Certified and serves Marion and all surrounding counties. They are expanding soon to Kokomo as well as the state of Florida (Lee County). Contact Clover Senior
Care for a free consultation at 844-366-2587, 317-709-4797 or clovercares.com.