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Allied Health Services  
Allied Health refers to services such as physiotherapy, dietetics, speech therapy, occupational therapy and social work. These health professionals are NZ registered and provide services both in public hospitals and the community. A GP referral is usually required for an assessment by an Allied Health professional.
Carer Support
Carer Support subsidy is sometimes called “28 day stay” or Respite Care. Funding is provided by Ministry of Health through the District Health Board so that carers can take a break from care-giving duties. Carer Support subsidy for older people is generally allocated by a Needs Assessor.
Continence Service  
This service is often part of District Nursing. Registered nurses help clients having problems with leakage of either urine or faeces. They can advise on exercises to improve the condition, or products and equipment to help manage it. In high-need cases continence staff may authorise District Health Board supply of continence product.
District Nurses  
These are registered nurses who visit people in their own home. They help with wound care, colostomy and catheter care, IV antibiotics, monitoring and management of medications, continence and health conditions. District nurses work with your GP and can refer on to other health services as required.
End of Life Funding  
Near the end of life there may be short-term funding available to pay for residential care costs. The funding is authorised by medical specialists and practice varies from one District Health Board to another.
Geriatricians are medical specialists who focus on the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease in older people and problems specific to ageing. These could include immobility, frailty, loss of balance, incontinence, impaired intellect and memory issues, as well as impaired vision and hearing loss.
Gerontology Services  
Gerontology Services are focussed on the needs of older people including assessment, treatment and rehabilitation services.
This is a term for a general practitioner, a qualified medical doctor who provides the first medical contact within the health system. GPs can refer patients on to other health professionals or specialists as required.
Household assistance  
This term refers to routine household tasks such as cleaning, laundry, meal provision and grocery shopping. It does not include things like washing curtains or spring cleaning.
InterRAI is an electronic assessment tool used by health professionals working with older people throughout New Zealand. The assessments highlight any issues and help assessors match services more closely to needs. InterRAI is internationally recognized and validated by research. It provides consistency of assessment across the country and will be used by planners to forecast future health service requirements.
Meals on Wheels  
This service is usually contracted by District Health Boards. Volunteer drivers deliver a hot meal on weekday lunchtimes to people who are not able to cook for themselves because of illness, injury or disability. Referrals are made by a GP or health professional. Local charges vary from $4 - $8 per meal.
Mental Health Services for Older People (MHSOP)  
MHSOP employ teams of registered health professionals such as nurses, social workers, needs assessors, psychologists and psychiatrists. They provide services to help the function and wellness of older adults with serious mental health problems or major behaviour change. This can include help to manage change related to dementia.
Needs Assessment and Service Coordination (NASC)
Needs Assessors are registered health professionals, sometimes called Gerontology nurses, contracted by the District Health Board. They work with you to identify the level of support required and whether these needs can be safely met at home. Services they may authorize include help with showering and dressing, housework, shopping and relief care for caregivers. They provide information about rest homes and the application form for Residential Care Subsidy.
Occupational Therapy  
Occupational Therapists are registered health professionals. The main goal of Occupational Therapy (also known as ‘OT’), is to help people participate in activities of everyday life. Therapists working with older people are often involved in assessment of safety around the home, assessment for equipment to help manage daily tasks, and developing new skills and interests.
Palliative care  
This is sometimes called “end of life” or “comfort care”. The focus is no longer on active treatment, but relief of symptoms so the person is pain-free and comfortable at the end of their life.
Personal care   
This refers to help with daily personal tasks such as getting out of bed, grooming, showering, dressing and undressing.  
This term refers to Primary Health Organisations, often called ‘PHOs’. They are funded by District Health Boards with the aim of providing better links between GPs and other primary health services such as physiotherapy, dietetics, speech therapy, occupational therapy and social work. The benefits of being enrolled with a PHO include cheaper doctor visits and reduced costs on prescription medicines.
Physiotherapists are registered health professionals. They have a focus on mobility for people who have a disability or problem caused by a physical or mental health event. Therapists working with older people often assess for mobility equipment like walkers, and work with clients to regain strength after an injury or to help prevent falls.
Residential Care
This is an umbrella term which refers to Ministry of Health certified care facilities for older people: rest homes, dementia units, hospitals and specialist hospitals. Click on 'more info' button for detail on levels of care.
Respite Care  
Respite Care can sometimes be allocated in addition to Carer Support for clients with high needs. Respite is short-term or temporary care of an older person in or out of the home to provide relief or respite to the regular care giver. Respite care is generally allocated by a Needs Assessor.
Restorative programmes
The Restorative approach marks a shift from “doing things for older people” to “working alongside older people”. The focus is to improve and restore function, building strength, capacity and independence. It can include coaching of an exercise programme designed to increase mobility or prevent falls, help in re-establishing social connections in the community, regaining skills and practical support to keeping the household going.

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