Senior care planning New York
If you are contemplating in home care for a family member or parent there are many things to consider. We’ve compiled a list of questions to help you gather the most information so that you may make the best choices. Not every question on the list may pertain to your situation. The guide is designed to prepare for every level of care and help you establish what level of care they may need.
Determine Lifestyle Needs
Having a clear picture of their daily lifestyle needs will help you determine the best level of care needed and the frequency of care required. If your parent is unable to verbalize how much care is needed you may be able to make some of these determinations by spending a few days at their home with them and observing their activity.
- Are they able to move around the house freely, manage the house cleaning, manage their bills, bathe, schedule repairs and keep up with the yard?
- Do they need help leaving the house to go food shopping, get prescriptions, go to the doctor, perform daily errands and out of the house activities?
- Are they forgetful, fearful or reluctant to leave the house?
- Are you familiar with their medical history?
As your parents age it becomes increasingly important to know their doctors and the medications they are taking. Avoid waiting until and emergency arises. Talk to them about it. Get a list of their doctors and the prescriptions they are taking. If your parents are unsure or unclear, schedule a trip to the doctor that you can attend with them to lean more. If they don’t have a doctor get recommendations on good primary care physicians and arrange for a consultation to find the best doctor to meet their needs.
- Do you know which doctors they use?
- Do they have a primary care physician?
- Do you know of any medical or mental conditions they have?
- Do you know what prescriptions they are taking and what they are for?
- Are you able to speak with your parents about their doctors and medications?
- Are they comfortable going to the doctor alone or do they need someone to go to the doctor with them?
- Do you know what insurance, if any, they carry?
Friends, Neighbors and Activities
Knowing your parents daily living routines can help you choose the right care and also alert you to any changes as they age. It’s important to have a list of numbers for friends and neighbors. These people may have contact with your parents more than you do and can be a great resource for information and assistance.
- Are you familiar with your parents’ daily living routines?
- Are you familiar with their typical activities (i.e., weekly card game, playing tennis, church, volunteer…)?
- Do you know who their friends and neighbors are and do you have their phone numbers?
- If they work or volunteer, do you know the proper contact information for a boss or supervisor?
Financial and Legal
Financial and legal information is needed at different levels of care and planning. Again, it is best not to wait until an emergency arises. Knowing financial and legal information will help ensure they get emergency care they need, allow you to make informed decisions, enable you to protect their assets, help save money and if needed prepare for end of life decisions.
- Will they need a will, living will, health proxy forms, additional insurance, trust, power of attorney?
- Do you know where they keep important documents such as birth certificate, social security number, insurance policies, insurance cards, Rx cards, deed to the home?
- Do they have a lawyer or accountant and do you have their phone numbers?
- Are you familiar with their assets, real estate, bank accounts, investments, retirement accounts? Does their lawyer or accountant handle some or all of these affairs for them?