Family caregivers often overlook the benefits and peace of mind that a geriatric care manager can provide. Caregivers may feel that they know how to care for their loved one in the best way possible. But very few caregivers can manage caring for themselves, their families and elderly loved ones without feeling anxious and overwhelmed at times.
A geriatric care manager is trained and experienced in any of several fields related to long-term care including: nursing, gerontology, social work, psychology, or case management, with a specialized focus on issues related to aging and elder care.
Many times when talking to clients about planning for long term care they tell me that they are aware of something called the “five year look-back period.” Unfortunately, many of these people have no idea what the relevance of this look-back period is. This article will attempt to explain what is meant by that term and why it is such an important concept when planning how to protect your assets from the cost of long term care.
Financial fraud is one of the fastest growing forms of elder abuse. Financial elder abuse is when someone illegally or improperly uses a vulnerable senior’s money or other property. Many states now have laws that make elder financial abuse a crime and provide ways to help the senior and punish the scammer.
Elder financial abuse is tough to fight because it often goes unreported. Many elder victims are often too confused, fearful or embarrassed by the crime to report it. A recent study by Consumers Digest estimated that there are five million cases of this financial abuse in the United States each year, but law enforcement only learn about one in twenty-five cases.
You can protect yourself and your loved ones from financial elder abuse by familiarizing yourself with the most common scams and learning what to do if you suspect foul play.
Scammers target elders that they perceive to be vulnerable. It is often those who are isolated, lonely, physically or mentally disabled, unfamiliar with handling their own finances or have recently lost a spouse. Continue Reading Scam Alert! Financial Scams Targeting Seniors →
Summer has come to a close and fall is right around the corner! Fall is a great season for family activities and elder care givers should get their parents involved as well. Here is a list of senior-friendly fall activities that elders and their care givers will enjoy.
Apple Picking- Walking or wheeling through an orchid gathering crisp, sweet apples is a great way to bond and enjoy the weather on a cool autumn day. You can even take the apples home and enjoy baking warm apple pie with the apples you both handpicked!
Canning the Last of the Summer Fruits and Veggies- Gather the remaining fruits and vegetables and preserve them to enjoy until next year. You can create jam, jellies or pie fillings out of the last of your peaches and berries. Continue Reading Fall Fun for Elder Care Givers →
Guardianship is a legal tool that grants a parent or other adult the authority to make legal decisions for a child or legally disabled adult.
There are different types of guardianship:
Guardianship of Estate – where the guardian is responsible for financial and estate matters only
Guardianship of Person – where the guardian is responsible for non-financial decision making
Plenary Guardianship of Person and Estate – which entails full guardianship of person and estate
Each type of guardianship can also be in the form of limited guardianship which means the court can choose to let an incapacitated person retain any rights he/she is capable of exercising on his/her own. There is also something called co-guardianship which can be of person, estate or both when two people share the decision making responsibility equally. Continue Reading The Basics of Guardianship →
The decision to place a loved one in a nursing home is difficult enough, but families also need to decide which one is the best choice. There are so many options, so how do you know which one is right?
Nursing homes provide 24-hours patient care, home-like environment, ensure proper nutrition and have skilled nurses. What else needs to be considered in choosing the right place? What steps should you take in selecting one for your loved one?
Make a checklist and get every question answered before selecting which home you believe is best.
1. Do Your Research: The first step in selecting a nursing home is to seek referrals. Talk with your doctor, long-term care professionals, hospital discharge planners, social workers and friends and family. Speaking with them can help you clarify issues and focus on your needs. Makes sure that the patient and members of the family are all involved in the decision-making process. Continue Reading Choosing the Right Nursing Home →
In order to eliminate problems and excess administrative work for your children and heirs, a bit of planning on your part is helpful. Choose now what you want to do with your assets and create a will, get help with legal agreements, living wills, trusts, etc. In order to do this, you may want to consult an elder law attorney. If you have children with disabilities and you are worried about their care after you are gone, an attorney practicing Special Needs Planning would be a wise choice.
Legal issues that affect people as they age and people with special needs are growing. Our laws are becoming more complex, and each state has different laws. Actions taken with regard to a single matter may have unintended legal effects. It is important that lawyers working with seniors, people with special needs, and their families, have a thorough understanding of the laws that may have an impact on a given situation to avoid future problems. Elder Law and Special Needs Planning encompass many different fields of law. Here are some samples:
We often talk about the legal forms and agreements we need to have. We discuss long term care insurance and how to make sure we are taken care of (or take care of ourselves) as we age. This time I’d like to talk about something else. Today let’s talk about flowers.
Everyone likes them. Every woman wants them. Most men don’t mind buying them for their wives, girlfriends, etc. On Saturday as we walked through the Philadelphia Flower Show I noted the many seniors and mature adults at the event. Wheelchairs and walkers didn’t stop them from attending to see the magnificent floral displays. This year’s British theme, BRILLIANT!, included displays of Big Ben, a monument garden with fountains and a gently moving statue (mime) as part of the imaginative display. Perhaps the show attracted these seniors because they love gardening. Perhaps they just wanted to get out of their homes for a change of atmosphere. Perhaps it was because even as we age, we remember the happy occasions when flowers were a part of our life celebrations or marked special moments with a loved one. Receiving flowers elicits fond memories for most of us. Perhaps it is simply that flowers make us happy, much like balloons and ice cream and parties. No matter how young or old we are, most of us love flowers.
Many baby boomers find themselves caring for an aging parent or parents. If you have a large family, the responsibility can be shared among your siblings and other family members. Unfortunately, some family members do not make themselves available to assist nor do they have concern for the aging adult, so often the elder care falls on only one or two children. These individuals then shoulder the entire responsibility for the care of the aging parent(s) – often at great personal sacrifice – including loss or decrease in income, additional financial burden, and loss of many hours of personal time.
If you are currently juggling your own home and family care and are now adding the care of an aging parent or relative, there may be some financial help available to you. Monetary compensation may be available in certain circumstances.
Before contacting any of these organizations or departments it is best to have the individuals’ financial records and also their medical records and history.
As the population gets older, it seems that more companies are offering long term care insurance for seniors. Yet, is it really necessary? There are many assumptions around long term care insurance, specifically that you or a loved one will one day become sick enough to need the kind of care, such as assisted living or nursing home, that long term care insurance provides.
Yet, many experts agree that unless you have substantial assets, long-term care insurance is a must. After all, Medicare and health insurance do not cover the long term custodial care (i.e. assistance with activities of daily living) that most seniors need after a serious illness. According to an article on Forbes.com, there are things to consider before signing up for long-term care insurance, since not all companies offering long-term care insurance are created equal.