Long Term Care Secret Guide
When a health care crisis hits, where do you start?
Initially you’ll be in shock and disoriented, but it’ll pass and then it will be time to gather and organize.
Every family situation is different, there are many factors that will dictate how you will start the process of caring for a convalescent spouse or family member.
One thing I’d like you know …you are not alone!
You will feel alone because this is the first time you are going through something like this, but listen to me …YOU ARE NOT ALONE!
There are incredible support groups made up of amazing people that you can get help and guidance from, seek them out. I’ll show you how shortly.
You may need information on organizing and developing a care plan, long distance care giving, family interactions, and emotional support for your other parent or family members. Other care givers may need information on legal issues, financial planning, and available housing options.
There will likely be medical questions, and confusion over Medicare, Medicaid and HMOs and what they covers.
See our Family Long Term Care Custom Guide for tips on how to get the help you need even if your insurance won’t cover and you don’t have mega bucks to spare!
In a crisis situation, we recommend that you focus immediately on the following issues:
Care giver burnout: Relief and guidance can come from support groups, family service agencies, professional geriatric care managers, hospital senior services, adult day care centers, volunteer agencies, transportation agencies, friendly visiting services, peer counselors respite programs, and mental health associations.
Financial and legal planning: Your local Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program (HICAP) office, an elder law attorney, Social Security and Medicare offices, Social Services departments and the Legal Counsel for the Elderly office can provide information and referrals to professionals.
Home care: Home health care agencies, places of worship, senior centers, hospices, neighbors and friends, community college job boards, civic groups, and Family Service Agencies are all good resources. Check the Yellow Pages for other listings under Counseling Services, private geriatric care managers, the Red Cross, and the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Hospice: Check the Yellow Pages under Hospice, Area Agency on Aging (AAA), hospitals and long-term care facilities.
Medical care: Contact your parent’s physician and other health professionals, mental health professionals, community mental health centers, hospital discharge planners or social workers, visiting nurse services, hospices, local and national medical associations, senior centers, family service agencies, adult protective services, and rehabilitation centers.
Nursing homes/long-term care facilities: Resources include hospital discharge planners, doctors and nurses, family and friends, community social service agencies, local or state long-term care ombudsman programs, the Continuing Care Accreditation Commission, and care management professionals.
We’ll be coming back to a lot of these topics in more detail in the next few days.
Stay informed and remember, your are not alone!
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