VNSNY Charitable Care Services Enrich Arjan’s Life
Living with congestive heart failure requires a constant balance—a fine-tuning of medications depending on vital signs, weight gain or loss, diet, activity, and mood. Thankfully for Arjan*, who was hospitalized for the condition, he had VNSNY care coordinator Shaneeza Khan, RN, to help him and his daughter navigate that balance and coordinate his complex medication management once he returned home.
“When someone’s in the hospital, their environment is controlled and they’re monitored all the time, but when they come home they are not,” says Shaneeza, who visits Arjan once a week. “Their diet changes, their activity level changes, and that can affect how the medication is working.” In her initial visit, she found that Arjan’s blood pressure was too low and immediately contacted the doctor, who reassessed and cut back certain medications.
Within a few short weeks, Arjan brightened from a sullen, isolated man who would not exchange a word with the visiting nurse to an eager conversationalist (with his daughter, Rina, translating). Uninsured, he speaks no English and is still grieving the recent loss of his wife, but he is adjusting. “He’s changed a lot compared to when he first came home. His walking has really improved, and he’s much more calm and secure, not so nervous as before,” says Rina, adding that she, too, feels great relief now that a team is helping her care for her father and keep him safely at home.
“Individuals who don’t have ready access to health care often simply go to the emergency room when things get dire,” says Shaneeza. “The charitable care that we provide is essential, as a way of keeping even one person—this person—out of the hospital.”
* The patient’s name has been changed for privacy.