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columbus represent

Monday, June 25, 2007

Post Script

For those of you finding yourselves all of a sudden the caregiver for your parent, here is a recent USA Today article which has some links to resources that might help. I know for myself it wasn't something I was prepared for in any way. We think about the future, but this part of the future seems to be a blind spot. No one wants to think about it happening, and then all of a sudden, one evening, there you are. The tables have turned, and there is no turning them back. As the first article in the USA Today series says:
"Starting to take over for your parents can be one of the most distressing experiences of a lifetime."
Its not something anyone whats to think about, but its something that you need to know about because its a time you need support, and trust me, social workers, discharge planners, admissions directors, doctors, nurses, aides, hospice teams; they are all great, but not one of them will help you to navigate the choppy waters of long term care and its financing on a personal level. 
I think what happens to so many is that their kids can't deal, and the parent gets neglected. The staff at the nursing home were amazed and so happy that Dad had people to care for him. So many family members simply admit their loved one and tell the staff "call me when its over."  Understandable to a degree because the difficulty of being a caregiver for a parent is inconceivable. But our parents deserve more. So take a moment, and begin to think about it. Begin to prepare yourself. You may think you have time, but you may not. My dad had just turned 62.


Blogger xine said...

One other thing: the Medicare website is great for checking out and comparing nursing homes (http://www.medicare.gov/NHCompare/home.asp). Of course, you must actually look at the place to really get a feel (and smell and sound) for what it is like, but Medicare.gov will help you narrow down the list of places that are acceptable as far as the number and types of infractions, staffing levels, culture of the home etc.

And for goodness sake, if you absolutely have to use a nursing home, go with one that is non-profit. Almost everyone in a nursing home eventually uses up all their assets and end up on Medicaid. The Medicaid reimbursment rates are the same regardless if they are for-profit or not, and that profit has to come from someplace. Usually through short staffing/shit wages.

4:34 PM

Blogger xine said...

And don't forget about home care!!! If it is at all possible, be sure to ask about it.

4:35 PM

Blogger iomi said...

I love you, christine. You're right, this is a very important topic.

5:27 PM


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