Frequent medical visits had become a way of life earlier this year for John and Audrey Stanton.
John, 86, suffered from serious eye problems, a painful skin infection called cellulitis and, more recently, repeated shortness of breath — all of which kept landing him in the hospital.
"It was one thing after another. Like the doctor said, 'Somebody is after you!' " Stanton laughs.
And for his 81-year-old wife, Audrey, the nearly two-hour drive each way to Kaiser in Riverside from their home in Hemet was a tough haul.
"I’m not a long-distance driver so I had to be real careful," she says. "It was stressful."
But that stress dissipated last summer when John was admitted to the hospital -- without leaving home.
"I thought, 'Wow! This is amazing. I love this!' " John Stanton says. "This is what people need!"
Pneumonia, Cellulitis or Congestive Heart Failure
Stanton is one of about 125 patients who have been enrolled in an experimental "hospital at home" program run out of Kaiser’s Permanente’s Riverside Medical Center.
Launched two years ago, the program is designed for people who need treatment -- typically only given in the hospital -- for one of three conditions: pneumonia, cellulitis or congestive heart failure.