WHEN YOUR LOVED ONE IS ABUSED IN A NURSING HOME: A PERSONAL STORY

My sister opened the door of our mother’s nursing home room one afternoon just in time to see the nursing assistant hit her. It was a real haymaker that snapped Mother’s head back.

“Why did you hit my mother?” my sister asked.

“I asked her to sit up and she didn’t,” the young woman replied. Our mother was....

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MARRIED COUPLE MEDICAID ASSET PRESERVATION USING RESOURCE ASSESSMENTS

Medicaid Resource Assessment are an important tool to understand and utilize when one spouse is in need of long term care. A portion of the Medicaid rules is designed to protect the community spouse (spouse at home) from impoverishment and unnecessary dissipation of family assets. Only the institutionalized spouse (spouse in a facility) is required to have assets of $2,000 or less and a pre-paid funeral.

….FULL ARTICLE

CAREGIVER SUPPORT GROUPS: IS THERE ONE THAT’S RIGHT FOR YOU?

If you’re a caregiver, you may have already read articles about the importance of preventing burnout. Usually these articles include a suggestion to join a support group. Perhaps you’re reluctant to do so because you wonder what caregiver groups are all about and whether joining one would really help you.  The overall goal of caregiver support groups is to enhance participants’ coping skills through mutual support and information sharing. Objectives may include:.....

….FULL ARTICLE

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The average caregiver serves in this role for four years. Only 30 percent provide care for less than a year. Twenty-four percent provide care for more than five years, and 15 percent of caregivers provide care for 10 years or more.


More information about caregiving can be found at www.caregiver.org/caregiver-statistics-demographics

Though definitions and criteria vary, numerous studies of informal caregiving in the United States generally define a caregiver as an unpaid individual – spouse, partner, family member, friend or neighbor – who assists another person on a regular basis with activities of daily living and/or medical tasks. The caregiver feeds the care receiver if necessary. He or she helps the person dress each morning and undress and prepare for bed each night. A caregiver may help the care receiver use the bathroom. If the care receiver is fully or partially incontinent, the caregiver changes diapers as needed. The caregiver often gives medicines. He or she may take the care recipient’s blood pressure or perform blood sugar tests or other medical procedures and keep a written record for the person’s physician.


About 43.5 million caregivers in the United States provided unpaid care to someone in the past 12 months, as reported by the National Alliance for Caregiving and the AARP. About 34.2 million Americans provided unpaid care to an adult age 50 years or older in 2015. Most of these (82 percent) cared for one other adult, but 15 percent cared for two adults and 3 percent cared for three or more adults. In 2015, the Alzheimer’s Association estimated about 15.7 million family caregivers were caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia.

WHO ARE THE CAREGIVERS?

The average age of home caregivers is 49.2 years. Forty-eight percent are 18 to 49 years old and 34 percent are older than 65 years. The number of hours given to caregiving increases with the age of the caregiver. Caring for parents is the primary situation for caregivers between the ages of 50 and 64 years, with 70 percent of this group involved in parent care.


More than 75 percent of caregivers are female. Women may spend as much as 50 percent more time providing care than men. Sixty-five percent of care receivers are female, with an average age of 69.4 years. However, among caregivers who are spouses aged 75 years or more, both sexes provide equal amounts of care. Caregivers who spend 21 hours or more weekly at caregiving tasks are nearly four times more likely to be caring for a spouse or partner. Some studies show 36 percent of female caregivers perform the most difficult caregiving tasks, such as bathing, toileting and dressing, compared to 24 percent of male caregivers. Men, some studies find, are more likely to help with finances, arrangement of care and other tasks that, while important, are less physically burdensome. Forty percent of male caregivers were found to use paid assistance for a loved one’s personal care.

MARTHA EVANS SPARKS

Martha Evans Sparks is a Staff Writer for Living Well 60+ Magazine

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