How do you care from afar when your loved one is elderly & chronically ill? (Part 2 of 5)
In part 1 of 5, we discussed Sally's health challenges. Sally has to decide to either go into an assisted living community or stay at home. Her son lives on the east coast, and he does not have a plan to care for his mom from afar. His dad (Sally's husband and then caregiver) died recently. So how do I begin to help Sally and her son? This is a popular question amongst caregiving families.
Today, we discuss Sally's wishes and the steps and processes that I use to help the son care from afar while keeping Sally well and happy and out of the emergency room. The first thing I did was to conduct a family caregiving survey. A Comfort Maker's caregiving survey includes a questionnaire and in-home assessment. The goal is to help Sally to state her wishes and help her son to identify his concerns and worries. The survey also helps me as a care manager and a care navigator to analyze ALL their needs (caregiving, financial, legal chronic illness management, wellness, and long-term care planning). From there, I can identify all the professionals needed to create a solid life-enhancing, cost-effective and fully coordinated long-term care plan for Sally.
The caregiving survey identified five important wishes that were identified for Sally
To stay at home and to age in place
To have her multi-level home modified for accessibility and safety
To prevent the son from ever becoming her hands-on caregiver
To stretch the funds, she has to last her for five years of in-home caregiving
To remain active in her homeowners' association board meetings.
Next time, I will share with you the second thing that I did, which was to build a caregiving team (based on the survey results) to keep Sally well and out of the emergency room.
If someone you love is challenged with chronic illnesses and you need assistance managing their care, or if you would like a free copy of the layman's version of my caregiving survey, please call me between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on weekdays.
– Katie Klem, Owner, Comfort Makers, 503-369-2460