Solutions for Long-Distance Caregiving

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 7,947
    Mary Alexander with Home Instead Senior Care discusses how to best manage long-distance care-giving. This video focuses on some solutions for long distance caregiving problems that can arise.

    Mary Alexander: Hi! I'm Mary Alexander with Home Instead Senior Care. And I'm discussing how to best manage long distance caregiving. And now, I want to provide some solutions for long distance caregiving problems that can arise.

    Despite of our strongest prayers and wishes, emergencies happen. So what prevented steps can you take to be ready in the event of an emergency. It's important to create a carry notebook and gather information about your senior loved one. Copies of some of that information should also be readily available to emergency responders.

    The best way to manage this is to keep a file of life on your loved one's refrigerator. The file should contain a list of medications, the senior is currently taking, any special conditions they have, names and contact information of doctors and family members, as well as any other special medical instructions they need to share.

    You can also take steps to prepare yourself. Should you need to take an emergency trip. First, make sure that others in your care will be cared for, in your absence. If you have children or pets, make sure your spouse, other family members or a friend is prepared and ready to take over their care as should you need to leave quickly. You should also have a bag packed and ready to go with two or three days with the clothing and personal items.

    Your employer, if you have one, should also be aware ahead of time that you're in a long distance care giving situation and may need to leave suddenly. Having given advanced notice and made preparations will make a difficult situation easier for all to deal with.

    Another solution for long distance caregiving is hiring a Geriatric Care Manager. These professionals are usually licensed gerontologists or nursing or social work professionals who specialize in geriatrics.

    Some families hire a Geriatric Care Manager as a one time service to evaluate and assess a parent's needs, and to coordinate care through community resources. Other families go beyond that step and hire a person to provide ongoing care planning and monitoring.

    In this case, they become a sort of professional relative to help you and your family to identify needs and how to meet them. The National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers can help you find a care manager near your family member.

    Arranging for in-home care for your parents or senior loved one is another way to lighten the load for you and other caregivers. In-Home care services range from health aids, to home makers, to friendly visits and a respite care.

    Be sure to arrange for services from licensed professionals or companies such as Home Instead Senior Care. They'll conduct an assessment and then offer in-home solutions that will help make life easier for all involved.

    There are lot of sources out there to help you find solutions to your long distance caregiving needs. Local senior centers and your parent's medical professionals are good places to start to find reliable referrals.

    The Internet has lots of information. Some great resources are The National Institute on Aging homeinstead.

    com, and caring.

    com.

    Long distance care giving is tough, but the situation can be make easier by seeking out and using resources that'll help you and your senior loved one, maintain quality of life.