Proactive or Reactive Care?

by Thomas Ryan VP @Home Healthcare

When home care becomes a topic in your family, what is the reason?  Is it because you know that yourself or a family member is approaching the age where they may require a little more help around the house?  Usually it is because that person had an incident.  I do often speak with families that are just doing research, but more often it is a result of a fall or a surgery, etc.  Home care isn’t a service that people plan for. This is something that takes you by surprise and then you scramble to put it in place.  Mostly families have no knowledge of how it works.  When you need to start service in a hurry and have no knowledge of what to do, it can be very stressful.

In a perfect world, doing the research and preparing for the cost should be done years in advance.  You can purchase Long Term Care Insurance, and speak with a few agencies.  By doing this you will help ease the burden of scrambling in a day or two to get a caregiver in your home.  Unfortunately that is usually not the case.  Most families believe that home care is a last resort.  What they don’t understand is that if you appropriately start service at the right time, you may be able to prevent accidents from happening.  If there is someone there to help you bring your laundry into the basement to get done, then maybe you avoid that fall down the stairs.  If you have a person with dementia, you may avoid wandering or getting lost driving just to name a few.  I call this proactive care.  I’m not saying have a person come and live in.  I’m just saying if you started with minimal time, you may ease the burden of everyday chores which may cause injury.  We all know that a fall at 85 years old can be disastrous.  You don’t bounce back like you are 25 years old, and it may send you into a downward spiral.  Prevention is better than rehabilitation.

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