Let’s hear it for our veterans! The men and women who have been part of our country’s Armed Forces have sacrificed plenty to secure the freedoms we all enjoy. The team at Accredited Home Care wants to publically thank all veterans for their commitment and service.
Many of our employees have been able to give their thanks personally to clients who are veterans. Over the last 35 years, we’ve helped thousands of Californians with their home health needs. While we don’t keep track of which clients have past military service, we’ve met plenty, including some who have been part of American wars going back decades. Other retired members of the military who are now clients have served in peacetime.
Some clients are happy to share their memories and accomplishments with us and even proudly show us their photos and other keepsakes. Others aren’t always as comfortable talking about their time in their service, but family members may fill in details.
Because we work with a wide range of client ages and health needs, we may work with World War II veterans one day, Korean vets another, Vietnam vets another and even some survivors of more recent conflicts who have chosen to receive home health care.
Veterans are always worth thanking, but November is a special time. Veterans Day is Nov. 11, which since 1954, has been an ideal occasion to show appreciation for the contributions of veterans.
Then-President Dwight D. Eisenhower, himself a general during World War II, officially designated the holiday, on a day that celebrated a previous military victory, Armistice Day, which was first commemorated in 1919, a year after the end of World War I. It became an official holiday in 1938.
The actual date of Veterans Day has moved a few times over the years, sometimes different days in November, and sometimes a few days in October. But in 1975, then-President Gerald Ford returned it to Nov 11, where it has remained.
Interestingly, other countries celebrate their respective armed forces on this date or at least around this time each year, including Great Britain, which has moment of silence at 11 a.m. on Nov 11, and celebrates Remembrance Sunday the second Sunday of November. Canada also celebrates Remembrance Day.
Throughout America, the celebrations can include parades, ceremonies, and the placement of decorations of veterans’ graves at cemeteries. People who are unable to do these things can still fly the flag or play patriotic music.
Role of veterans
According to the U.S. Census, there are about 18.8 million veterans in the U.S.
As of 2015, California has the highest number, about 1.6 million. The states with the next highest amount of veterans are Texas and Florida, which each have about 1.5 million apiece.
Some veterans receive their health care from the Department of Veterans Affairs, which maintains medical centers and outpatient centers around the country. But some people, often veterans living in more remote areas, prefer working with their own provider in their own communities. Home health care services can also be available.
Some of the reasons for home health care are similar regardless of military experience. A stroke, for instance, may cause mental or physical problems. Mobility problems can be due to trauma or the aging process.
But there are also some types of health conditions that are more commonly seen in veterans. This can include pain or mobility problems due to wounds, even if the actual injury took place decades ago.
Some types of cancers are seen more frequently in veterans than in the greater civilian population. For instance, prostate cancer and non-Hodgkin’s’ lymphoma, along with some forms of neuropathy or soft tissue sarcoma are more common, possibly due to the person’s exposure to Agent Orange, a chemical used on battlefields, especially during Vietnam.
There can also be some emotional trauma as well, everything from depression to anxiety to post-traumatic stress disorders.
How we can help
Home health care agencies such as Accredited Home Care treat veteran clients like every other client, which is to say everyone receives the highest levels of customer service and quality of care.
We also offer access to a variety of specialized care, including physical therapists, who can help people recover and rehabilitate from injuries. Occupational therapists can help with healing as well, and get clients in better physical shape to return to work or some other related activity.
Speech therapists can help people affected by strokes or similar health conditions that may limit their ability to communicate, eat or swallow. Social workers can help look at finances or discuss facility or future home health needs. Massage therapists can provide relaxation for strained muscles.
A variety of other nursing services and specialists are available, as well as even basic assistance from a Home Health Aide with minor housework, meal preparation or shopping. They can even provide hygiene help and even basic companionship during a visit.
Overall, Accredited Home Care is always eager to celebrate the contributions of local veterans in helping to keep our country safe, especially on and around Veterans Day.