About six months ago, octogenarian Harriet Kabel had a heart attack and went to the emergency room. After she was stabilized, she was sent to a rehabilitation hospital for a few weeks and upon discharge, her doctor recommended home health; Harriet chose the VNA. “To be honest with you, I don’t know if I would have gotten back up on my feet as quickly if I didn’t have the VNA coming here. I think it was twice a week, I’m not sure, but it was just wonderful,” she says.
Harriet’s health regimen included basic physical therapy, stretching and walking to “get her moving again.” It also included a nutritionist. “I eat the things that I like and I’m kind of set in my ways. My breakfast is always the same,” says Harriet. “So, they’ve helped me with ‘this is what you should eat for a balanced (heart-healthy) diet.’”
The nutritionist wasn’t only concerned about Harriet choosing heart-healthy foods, he was also concerned that she was not eating enough. “He was going over why it’s important that I have to eat, and to eat the right things to give me energy since I’m a very poor eater except for my breakfast,” she says, adding that this isn’t the first time she has had the VNA for home health care.
Her first experience with the VNA was after a stroke several years ago. “They sent out a physical therapist to work with me in the house so that I could get my right side moving again,” she recalls. “I remember learning to use the walker to get out of the house and I remember them walking me because there was a sidewalk. He was out here maybe five times and each time we went a little further, so I think they’re an amazing organization that’s been made available to people,” she says.
Harriet’s stroke also negatively impacted her speech. “I never really lost my speech, but I remember working with the speech therapist because my responses were very hesitant. They came in to work on my speech because I couldn’t formulate the words and get it out and I remember stuttering a little bit. They helped a lot,” she says.
Harriet no longer requires the VNA’s services but says if she ever needs home health care again, the VNA is on speed dial. “When you’re not feeling well, getting out of the house is a chore, and the fact that the VNA comes to your home and gets you going and does things with you and gets you back into life is just really amazing. They’re a wonderful organization,” she says.