Thursday, September 17, 2015

Various laws that have a positive impact on caring and legal protection for the elderly



Various laws that have a positive impact on caring and legal protection for the elderly
The Older Americans Act (OAA) - law in effect in 1965
...funding for Meals on Wheels, local senior centers, long term care ombudsman offices, the National Family Caregiver Support Program, etc. ... up for reauthorization by Congress
A bill to reauthorize and improve the Older Americans Act of 1965, along with other purposes, which would reauthorize the OAA through the fiscal year 2017.
S. 2037: Older Americans Act Amendments of 2012
As noted on govtrack.us, the bill is in its initial phase for consideration by the 112th Congress. Click the link for more on the bill and an official summary of the bill: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/112/s2037
Link to the text of the S2037 Older Americans Act reauthorization
More on the Older Americans Act

The Elder Justice Act (EJA) – became law in March 2010
The Elder Justice Act amends the Social Security Act to include the addressing of the abuse, neglect, and exploitation of the elderly.
A summary of the bill (H.R.4993(109th)
The Elder Justice Act - text of the bill

National Family Caregiver Support Program
National Family Caregiver Support Act, Title IIIe – an amendment (passed by Congress in 2000) of the Older Americans Act (OAA). To find out more on this valuable program for family members and informal caregivers caring for their elderly relatives, and grandparents in need of help for caring for children 18 and under, click on these links:
The Older Americans Act amendment related to the National Family Caregiver Support Act can be found in the text of the bill, Sec 316  http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/106/hr782/text
H.R. 782 (106th): Older Americans Act Amendments of 2000
http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/106/hr782

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Elder Care Assistance - Examples of Organizations Providing Assistance


Elder Care (Eldercare) Assistance


There is an elder care focused YouTube channel that you may want to subscribe to. Here's one example of the type of information they share on 'The Eldercare Channel"



Source: The Eldercare Channel on YouTube


Nurse Elder Care Consultant Gives Tips for Better Home Care Plan



Source: NYCareConnection - YouTube channel

Monday, September 1, 2014

Where to Obtain Information on Mesothelioma - the Asbestos Cancer


Where to Obtain Information on Mesothelioma - the Asbestos Cancer

Asbestos Cancer - Mesothelioma

Asbestos cancer is more commonly known as mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma, the type of cancer most commonly associated with asbestos exposure.
This cancer malignancy occurs in the lungs, heart, and abdomen. As noted on the mesothelioma.com website, “A mesothelioma diagnosis is generally classified as one of the following three types: pleural mesothelioma which occurs in the lining of the lungs (known as the pleura); peritoneal mesothelioma which occurs in the lining of the abdominal cavity (known as the peritoneum); and pericardial mesothelioma which occurs in the lining of the heart (known as the pericardium).
Here’s a “Did You Know?” image (source unknown) that lists important facts:


KEY FACT: NO AMOUNT of exposure to asbestos is safe!
KEY FACT: As of the post, there is no reliable cure for mesothelioma cancer.
The main focus for treating mesothelioma currently is providing treatment that reduces suffering and pain, and to prolong the patient’s life for as long as possible. Hopefully, the treatment will provide the person with the highest quality of life that is possible.

What can you do if you suspect you or a loved one may have been exposed to asbestos and fear they may be suffering from mesothelioma? Talk to your (or their) personal physician regarding your concerns; they may refer you to a comprehensive cancer center where doctors specializing in recognizing and treating mesothelioma. There is also an information packet available from Mesothelioma.com that you may want to have sent to you or the person you are helping find answers for. There is a simple registration request form on the site, click here for one of the pages where you can request the packet of information.

Another valuable service that Mesothelioma.com provides is their “Treatment Alert Program” that you can sign up for to receive alerts with 24 hours of breaking news, announcements of breakthroughs and improvements in treatments. The alerts include the option to receive alerts on: Newest clinical trials; breaking treatment news, and information from top mesothelioma experts. Filling out your contact information for these alerts also completes the necessary information to have the informational packet sent to you.

Treatment options

Here are treatment options that are covered on the Mesothelioma.com website:
Conventional Treatments – these include surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy.

Experimental Treatments – drug treatments (e.g., Alimta®), gene therapy, immunotherapy, photodynamic and multimodality therapy.

Alternative Mesothelioma Treatment Options – click the link to see the full list of alternative treatments that may be of help when looking for alternative choices.
Treatment for mesothelioma is based on the stage that the cancer has progressed to at the time of first being diagnosed with the asbestos cancer. Click here for details…

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Mesothelioma Awareness Day - be a voice for the victims
http://www.mesothelioma.com/heather/awareness/

It is our hope that the information provided in this post will be passed on to others and that the information has provided a glimpse into this asbestos caused cancer, raising awareness and motivating folks to learn more about this cancer and ways to prevent it, and to help move to a full ban on the use of asbestos in the United States and throughout the world.



Saturday, August 16, 2014

Who Can I Contact About Senior Care Services?

Who Can I Contact About Senior Care Services?

Senior woman Caring for an elderly or sick parent/loved one on your own can be downright stressful for some households. Having to go to work daily to provide for your family and still find the time to care for your parents can be a lot of weight on just one or two people. Senior care services understand this complication and seek to provide solutions that will satisfy you and your loved one. However, if you’ve never done your research before, finding senior care services that are up to your standards will take a bit of time. Below are a few resources you could turn to for help.


Your Parent’s Primary Care Physician

One of the best and first places you might check for information on senior care facilities and services would be your parent’s primary care physician. Not only are they aware of facilities in the area that might service your loved one, but they are also aware of what services your family member will need based on their health conditions. For instance, if your parent needs to take medications during the day, they will be able to refer you to a facility that also supplies such services.


Local/National Senior Groups/Communities

Places like the AARP and other organizations for seniors are an ideal resource for finding more information on senior care services in your area. Their entire purpose is to serve the senior community and thus they will have accurate information on facilities and services that cater to what your family member may need. You can find this information online or find a senior community center in your neighborhood.


Friends, Family Members, Co-Workers, Neighbors

Of course you could always get the opinion from those that may have already gone through the selection process. If you have friends, family members, coworkers, or neighbors that are currently caring for seniors, they will have information that could help you in making the best choices for your loved one. Be sure to ask a few people to ensure you’re getting the best choices in your area.


Online Directories

If you’re really having a hard time locating senior care services in your area, you could always consider using an online directory. There are designated directories that allow reputable businesses to advertise their services within any given community. You could write down a list of potential companies and begin researching. Here's several elder care directory services: Eldercare Locator; Senior Care Directory; The Senior Living Directory; Elder Care Directory. We also list additional resources on our Website at Elder-Care-Assistance.com


Don’t Take Their Word

No matter who you talk to about senior care services it is essential that you don’t take their word for it. There are thousands of reports of senior abuse each year and you want to make sure your family member does not become a victim as well. After gathering a list of ideal services consider doing further research to find out what others have to say about the services. If you find that a majority of the seniors and their family members are satisfied with the services than you should be alright.
Scheduling a visit with you and your loved one is ideal too. This allows you to get a feel for the facilities and also allows your family member to determine whether they would be comfortable there.

Mike Conkey
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Thursday, February 13, 2014

The Accidental Caregiver

The Accidental Caregiver

You've heard people say it and maybe you have even said it yourself.  "Don’t worry Mom or Dad, I’ll take care of you in your old age."

This always seems to be a simple loving gesture on your part as you see them beginning to age and settle into retirement.  The thought of their actually failing in health or mental capabilities seems absurd or at most, years down the road. Thus it catches most children and spouses unprepared and sometimes surprised when their loved one needs care and help with daily living activities.
  
 A stroke, injury or sudden illness may result in the immediate need for a significant caregiving commitment.  On the other hand a slowly progressing infirmity of old age or the slow onset of dementia may require intermittent caregiving.  Either way, if you have not made provisions for this, you will accidentally become a "caregiver."

Former first lady Rosalynn Carter made this statement,

 "There are only four kinds of people in this world: those who have been caregivers, those who currently are caregivers, those who will be caregivers, those who will need caregivers."

Statistics show that the possibility of becoming a family caregiver grows yearly.

"43.5 million of adult family caregivers care for someone 50+ years of age and 14.9 million care for someone who has Alzheimer's disease or other dementia."
Alzheimer's Association, 2011 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures, Alzheimer's and Dementia, Vol.7, Issue 2.

"The value of unpaid family caregivers will likely continue to be the largest source of long-term care services in the U.S., and the aging population 65 and over will more than double between the years 2000 and 2030, increasing to 71.5 million from 35.1 million in 2000." Coughlin, J., (2010). Estimating the Impact of Caregiving and Employment on Well-Being: Outcomes & Insights in Health Management, Vol. 2; Issue 1

There are two types of caregiving scenarios, Formal and Informal.

Formal Caregivers

Formal caregivers are care providers associated with a service system.  Service systems might include for-profit or nonprofit nursing homes, intermediate care facilities, assisted living, home care agencies, community services, hospice, church or charity service groups, adult day care, senior centers, association services and state aging services. Professional care managers and legal and financial professionals can also be of help.  Some these formal caregiver services are covered by Health Insurance, Long Term Care Insurance, Medicare and VA Benefits.  Otherwise for formal care where there is a charge, payment is out-of-pocket by the individual or family members.  Private pay, out-of-pocket for long term care services can be costly and advance financial planning is advised when possible.

Informal Caregivers

Informal caregivers are family, friends, neighbors, or church members who provide unpaid care out of love, respect, obligation, or friendship to a disabled person. 
 The number of informal caregivers range from 20 million to 50 million people.  This could represent about 20% of the total population providing part-time or full-time care for loved ones. 

About two-thirds of those caregivers for people over age 50 are employed full-time or part-time and two-thirds of those–about 45% of all working caregivers–report having to rearrange their work schedule decrease their hours or take an unpaid leave in order to meet their caregiving responsibilities. 

The average amount of time informal caregivers provide assistance is 4.5 years, but 20% will provide care for 5 years or longer (National long term care survey 1999).

Below are some of the activities provided by or supervised by informal caregivers. The Accidental Caregivers, involved in this type of care, will find themselves picking up a few things that need to be done or supervised in the beginning and adding more as the need increases.
Managing money and paying bills
Writing letters or notes
Making repairs to the home, maintaining a yard, and removing snow
Providing comfort and assurance or arranging for professional counseling
Answering the phone
Making arrangements for meeting medical needs and doctors' appointments
Shopping and running errands
Providing transportation
Maintaining the household
Attending to personal hygiene and personal grooming
Administering medications
Help with walking, lifting, and bathing
Help with using the bathroom and with incontinence
Providing pain management
Preventing unsafe behavior and preventing wandering
Feeding
Providing meals
Doing the laundry
24 hour care and monitoring
Nutrition management
Financial planning
Legal directives
Medical directives
End of life planning


Understanding the Progression of Care Commitment

The chart below illustrates the relationship of informal care to formal care.  As care needs increase, both in the number of hours required and in the number or intensity of activities requiring help, there is a greater need for the services of formal caregivers.
The Progression of Care Commitment
 (The Four Steps of Long Term Care Planning, National Care Planning Council)

The Progression of Care Commitment

"Unfortunately, many informal caregivers become so focused on their task, they don't realize they are getting in over their heads and that they have reached the point where partial or total formal caregiving is necessary.  Managing their own needs and daily schedule along with those of the person they are caring for can become so consuming and energy depleting that the caregiver themselves are in need of care.  It becomes time to bring in other family members, professional services and medical advisors to create a plan of care that is best for all involved." - National Care Planning Council


Caregiver stress and caregiver burnout are serious issues that face caregivers providing both formal and informal care. Make certain you take care of yourself as well as take care of your loved one. The work of caregiver is difficult, but as caregiver Marlo Solitto said "Caregiving can be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life."

This post is courtesy of the National Care Planning Council, which we are proud members of...Elder Care Assistance profile page on NCPC - http://bit.ly/LyAABo