Q:

How do you plan for the care of an elder?

A:

Quick Answer

To plan for the care of an elder, talk with him to find out about his desires and thoughts about aging, collect essential medical information, obtain a comprehensive geriatric assessment and research potential family and community resources. Create an action plan focusing on his present needs, treatment and shelter options.

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Full Answer

Ask about the elder’s long-term plans, health care choices, financial plans and his preferences when it comes to staying in his current home, hiring a caregiver, having a family member assist him or exploring alternative housing, such as senior housing and assisted living. Acquire important information, including the elder’s Social Security number, Medicare number, Medicaid number, Veterans Administration claim number and list of insurance plans.

Getting a comprehensive geriatric assessment helps assess the elder’s capabilities based on his medical, physical, financial and social statuses. After determining the needs and preferences of the elder, set up a family meeting to inform relatives about the elder’s chosen plan and current situation. Find out if some family members wish to offer caregiving help, particularly if the elder plans to continue living at home.

It is essential to monitor the elder’s needs constantly and update the care plan as necessary. Care provided for an elder may include home care, adult day care, respite care, residential care or hospice care.

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