Elder Parent and Loved One’s Care May be More Intensive than Imagined Elder Parent

Elder parent care is about many things all rolled into one. There are many things to consider: health, ability to care for oneself, emotional (Depression) and psychological and cognitive (Dementia) well-being, finances, legal planning and safety (Fall Prevention). Delray Beach in South Florida, like its neighboring cities in Palm Beach County is home to many retirees and post retirees and therefore, services abound. Working in home health care, we see many situations in which families or individuals meet challenges directly and many others, who either failed to plan, didn’t plan well enough or are in such denial that mild interventions are not possible until a real change in the status quo occurs.

In South Florida our Snowbird population means that many Elders are living away from family for up to half a year.  In general, many seniors retire and age in South Florida, leaving the snow and adult children up north. This results in the Older Adult and family members relying more on Elder Parent Care Services and Professionals to help manage their challenges and needs. We recommend working with a Social Worker or Geriatric Care Manager who is experienced with the services, Government benefits, Community resources and needs of an aging population. Delray Beach is a good example of a city which caters greatly to its retired and older citizens. There are so many doctors, specialists, Elder Law Attorneys, Financial planners, Home Care and Medicare companies, Day Care and Senior Centers, Rehab Centers, Out-Patient Centers for Physical Therapy, Dialysis, hospitals, Assisted Living Facilities, Memory Care Residences and so forth.

Many companies focus on the medical needs of this population and there are certainly many healths, physical and cognitive issues which need tending to. Additionally however,  with elder parent care, it is important not only to address the current situation but to look into the future; one, three, five or ten years forward to see what decisions will need to be made, how an illness or progressive disease affects where one lives, services required and how to pay for those services.

There are some things in life we can plan for and other things we can react to. It is always best to have a Plan A and B, just in case. The same is true for designating a Primary Power of Attorney, and a secondary one. In caring for people where they live, many considerations ought to be addressed in a Care Plan. Deciding to get some help in the home, hiring a caregiver is a good first step to address immediate concerns such as: help with showering, dressing or walking (ADLs). Of times, an older relative may just need some short term assistance coming out of the hospital or rehab, with laundry, shopping, driving, cooking and light housekeeping. Other times, when the primary caregiver needs help or the disease process accelerates, more help is sought.

Most Home Care http://www. paradisehomehealthcare.com/home-care-boca-raton-area-seniors/ companies are able to schedule an aide but fail to look at the wider spectrum of needs and the opportunities to refer families to other professionals which can make life safer and more secure as well as putting together a future plan.

Because an elder individual is more than their medical profile, a wider range of things should be acknowledged at the very least.

Meet with an Elder Law Attorney

Plan with a Financial Planner

Make some changes in your home if your plan is to age there

Assess how many hours or days of assistance at home make sense for you

Check with your Long Term Care Insurance provider some key things about your policy _ i.e. Elimination periods and daily benefits

Explore VA and other services/financial benefits in the community and beyond.

Discuss what your loved one wants if he/she can no longer live at home

If adult sons and daughters live elsewhere, consider hiring a Geriatric Care Manager

Does your private duty home care company have nurses for Medication Management and a Social Worker to discuss other concerns?

It is wonderful to live in sunny South Florida, be it Delray Beach, Boynton Beach, Boca Raton or Ft. Lauderdale and the cities around both Palm Beach & Broward counties not just because of the weather but because of the choices one has for a wide range of Elder Care Services.