Creating a caregiver contingency plan; It’s good for the heart!

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February is declared as “American Heart Month”.  It’s been an industry experience that folks come into receiving care giving  services very late.  Often, it’s after a discharge planner tells the family; “I don’t know where your Mom is going, but she can’t go home”.  This experience is a catalyst for what happens next, which is often a “shore it up and get it done” process of resourcing.  In February last year, Gallup(R) Wellbeing released the following report;

In U.S., Caregivers Suffer From Poorer Physical Health

An excerpt from the report; Adult caregivers younger than 30, for example, are 63% more likely than non-caregivers to have high blood pressure and are 61% more likely to have recurring neck or back pain. Even seniors feel negative effects of caregiving, with caregivers aged 65 and older being 26% more likely than non-caregivers to report daily physical pain.

 It’s been our experience that when folks have planned ahead for their caregiving needs the catalyst of a crisis is unnecessary and the process is seamless.  I’m quoting here statements made by new client family members about their experience with bring care into the home; “Mom’s caregiver is wonderful, she is so patient” “Mom’s Care Manager was very good, very thorough in her information” “I think mom thinks that her caregiver is only for her” “the staffers are very patient and flexible, as mom’s needs are changing, they have been very helpful”

“This is working so much better than I ever imagined” “your caregiver has a way of relating with my mother, she suggests things for her to do, that my mother would never do for me” “your nurse was so impressive with my first phone call to you, I felt immediately comfortable.” “your social worker focused on my mother in a way that was perfect. I think my mother really feels like she has some control in this, it is perfect”

* Consider developing a caregiver contingency plan and share it with those you love