Southington resident MaryAnn Kjellquist was worried about her elderly mother. Angeline Giza, 90, was having mouth problems — dry mouth, sores and cavities — and she suspected that her prescription medications could be the cause.
Giza read in the newspaper that a geriatric pharmacist was available for home visits in Southington and made the call. At a convenient time, the mother and daughter met at the home with Sean M. Jeffery, director of Clinical Pharmacy Services, Integrated Care Partners, Hartford HealthCare.
To Kjellquist’s surprise, Jeffery’s focus at first was not on the medication but on her mother’s well-being, including her health history, her home’s safety and her quality of life. He then learned more about her prescriptions, how she manages them, if she organizes her own pill box, how and when she takes them, use of her inhaler and more.
“He took all aspects of my mother into account,” Kjellquist said.
Giza, who was a nurse at the Hospital of Central Connecticut, Bradley Memorial campus, was well versed about managing medication, including her own.
But Jeffery researched side effects and interactions on his laptop while he was still at the home. Within one week, he emailed a full report and Kjellquist brought it to her mother’s physician at the next visit. The medications were adjusted, with one being phased out. “She still has dry mouth but there is a big difference. His plan worked so far – I’m very impressed,” Kjellquist said.
“I’m sure there are people who don’t know about this. It’s such a great service. Your doctor doesn’t have time to give like this. And some people don’t have family members to help,” Kjellquist said. “The whole experience was wonderful.”
This in-home geriatric pharmacist service is offered by Hartford HealthCare Center for Healthy Aging through a Main Street Community Foundation grant. Southington residents who may benefit from this service include those who are unclear about their medications, worried about interactions and/or having difficulty remembering to take them. For more information or to schedule an in-home geriatric pharmacist visit, call 1.877.424.4641.
Hartford HealthCare Center for Healthy Aging, a not-for-profit member of Hartford HealthCare Senior Services, is a resource and assessment center designed to enhance access to services and information related to attaining optimal quality of life for seniors and their caregivers. For more information about Hartford HealthCare Center for Healthy Aging, click here or call 1.877.424.4641.