Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Shopping for the Right In-home Help By Eileen Beal, MA

Shopping for the Right In-home Help: Shopping for the Right In-home Help

By Eileen Beal, MA

Home care vs. home health aide

Home care aides provide assistance with housekeeping and chores (meal preparation, shopping, errands, etc); socialization and companionship; and may also provide some personal care (bathing and grooming).  In some areas, they are called personal care assistants.

Home health aides – increasingly certified nursing assistants (CNAs) and/or state tested nursing assistants (STNA) – provide medically-related care (check blood pressure and glucose levels, dress dry wounds, empty colostomy bags, etc.); assist with therapeutic treatments prescribed by a physician; supervise medication administration; etc.

 “The client’s needs and the aide’s skill-level determine what the aide’s [hourly] fee will be.  The more skills the aide has, the higher the cost,” says Debbie Adams, RN, the Director of  the Cleveland, Ohio-based Western Reserve Area Agency on Aging’s Community Services and Support Program.

Write a job description

 Using the information you’ve gathered from discussing and assessing your loved ones’ needs, write a detailed job description.  “Care expectations vary from client to client, so having everything in writing means everyone knows, and meets, expectations,” says Lucy Andrews, the nurse/CEO at Santa Rosa, California-based At Your Service Home Care.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Renting a Stairlift for short periods

Renting a Stairlift for the Holidays | The Intentional Caregiver: Renting a Stairlift for the Holidays

courtesy of depositphotos.com

Christmas is an exciting time, filled with giving presents and simply being together as a family. You want to be able to enjoy the time spent with family and friends and not spend valuable family time worrying about mobility issues.

If you have become less able in recent years, or if you are caregiving for someone who has, it is understandable that you may not have the same holiday cheer you once had. You may find going to visit family and friends a chore as you or your care recipient struggle to climb up their staircase. You may feel like you will be a burden if you or your loved one cannot move freely around their home. You do not want your family to have to work their Christmas plans around any lack of mobility so you may suggest you will stay at home.

What most people do not realise is that if you can rent a stairlift for the holidays! A mobility lift is the perfect answer to all your mobility needs during the busy Christmas period. Perhaps your children live far away and you would like to stay with them before Christmas until the New Year.


Features of typical rental lifts include:

  • Brand new rail and fully reconditioned seat

  • Comfortable padded seating and back rest

  • Fold up seat, arms and foot rest

  • Remote controls

  • Battery powered

  • Directional paddle switches

  • Digital diagnostic display

  • Safety sensors

Monday, January 7, 2013

The MedCottage, also nicknamed "the Granny pod",

Where to put elderly parents - National Green Living | Examiner.com: The MedCottage, also nicknamed "the Granny pod", is similar to a three-room apartment but it is equipped like a hospital room. Its water, electric and sewage systems work off the caregiver's home. It has a kitchenette and laundry facilities and comes in three sizes, 288 square feet, 299 square feet, or 605 square feet. The kitchen has a small refrigerator, microwave, and medication dispenser. One wall has a first-aid kit and even a defibrillator machine. There are safety rails, the bathroom is handicapped accessible, and there are three built-in cameras with one in the ceiling over the kitchen area and one in the floor to provide alerts of falls in the unit. Read the Washington Post article for more pictures of the unit and the story of the first occupant of one.

Smart robotic features monitor vital signs, filter air contaminants, and communicate with the outside world. Computers prompt with medication reminders and sensors alert caregivers of problems like the occupant falling and needing help. There are entertainment options for music, literature and watching movies. The state law in Virginia, where they originated, classified them a few years ago as “temporary family health-care structures.” They may not be legal in some states, so get them pre-approved first before buying one.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A Family Caregiver’s Elevator Speech

A Family Caregiver’s Elevator Speech
“I am Elizabeth Chomsky’s daughter. She is a person living with dementia, but loved to paint, ice skate and still can have a wicked sense of humor. 

I want to be informed of any change in her condition, medications or situation since I am her primary caregiver, loving daughter and fearless caregiver.” (Or something like that.)

 Gary Barg



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