In a perfect world, mom or dad’s move to assisted living will be carefully researched and planned out. In reality, the move is often necessitated by sudden injury or illness and can’t be pre-planned. When the unforeseen happens, there is assistance available to insure the smoothest transition possible. Here are six resources for when an assisted living move comes unexpectedly.
Being able to research online during your lunch break is especially helpful for those struggling to balance home life, elder care and careers. This helps you come up with list of potential properties to place your loved one in. When you have a decently sized list, search for reviews and health inspections for the communities. Be assured that the ones you’re considering are suitable and safe.
Your internet search will likely lead you to referral services. This service is a great resource to develop your list of communities to visit or not visit. Public facilities can be located through your state’s department of health services. Be sure to confirm that you will not have to pay a fee when contacting the community. One of the largest national services is A Place for Mom.
One of the most difficult discussions between parents and children is often about finances. Often times, the children don’t want to interfere or the parents think it's none of the kids’ business. It's important to know that in order to make the best decision about their care, children need to know where their parents stand financially. The most important thing to determine is how to get the best care for senior loved ones on the available budget. Many assisted living communities will want assurances (in the form of a net worth statement) that your parent can afford their facility for a specific period of time. You’ll need to be prepared to share that information.
Assistance offered by federal and state programs is limited. Be sure to explore all of your options. Is your parent is a military veteran or a spouse of one? A local Veterans Administration office can let you know if they are eligible for ongoing benefits. You can visit their website at http://www.va.gov/. The benefits offered by Medicare do not pay for housing but Medicaid may. Also peruse this great article on the living frugally website The Dollar Stretcher, it offers tips on how to make assisted living more affordable.
Advocates and experts
When you narrow your list down to a few locations, research the communities through a local ombudsperson. These senior advocates inspect and rate communities, and they know which ones are safe, clean and well managed. You can also consult with an attorney specializing in elder care law. They will let you know the legal ramifications and provide a neutral voice in case of family disagreements.
Involve the family
Some family members are more comfortable with hospitals and assisted living communities than others. Be sure to include those siblings in the discussions but respect their discomfort. Are there other tasks for your parents that they could handle while you organize the care? Not everyone will agree on what needs to be done, but everyone should be heard and involved.
There is a lot to do very quickly when dad or mom’s move to an assisted living community in imminent. Use these resources to make the transition smoother. Do you or your loved ones reside in Tennessee or Georgia? We have independent living, assisted living and dementia care communities available for a personal tour daily.