With a rising elderly population globally, two international accreditation organizations have launched programmes for long term care and rehabilitation.
Although as yet few people go overseas for long-term care, there is a tendency for some colder nations such as those in Scandinavia, to send older people needing care to warmer ones for the winter. One possible future trend could be for people to go, or be sent by relatives, to another country for long-term care as the basic cost in the USA and some Western European countries is now enormous. This is a matter for major debate, as some Western Europe countries totally disagree with people being sent to care homes, as they believe that they should be cared for at home within their families.
Temos has launched its Quality in International Rehabilitation Care programme and accredited the first centre, in Greece. The assessment includes the therapeutic, medical and non-medical services for rehab care containing the systematic and continuous processing of patients, the identification, analysis and improvement of quality of structures, processes and results in rehab services.
Animus Recovery and Rehabilitation Centre in Trikala opened in May 2008. It looks after people who have accidents or diseases, and then either need outpatient treatment or hospitalisation for their recovery and rehabilitation. Animus is being extended to offer space for more patients.
Animus actively seeks medical tourists considering rehabilitation services in Greece. The Temos certification is part of the plan to get international exposure and trust in a sector that has a poor reputation. The process of applying to Temos has helped Animus improve standards and hopes the quality approval will give it a significant competitive advantage.
Long Term Care is the newest JCI accreditation programme, designed to address the care of individuals needing long term care. JCI accepts that the needs of people in hospices, seeking temporary care, needing home care and permanent or on-off long term care are increasingly fractured. So it is developing specific care standards for each sector to replace an overall care one.