Are you aware that the month of November has been devoted to recognizing and encouraging the nation’s family caregiver population? During November, National Family Caregivers Month formally acknowledges the work of these unselfish family members who are crucial to our society and understands their value. In fact, without the vital and year-round aid of family caregivers, millions of seniors would have serious difficulties.
Throughout the nation there are over 53 million of these compassionate individuals. In recognition of National Family Caregivers Month, we would like to share some very important resources for caregivers and seniors on our blog.
1. Respite care should be available for caregivers. Caregiving is often a sacrifice in terms of time, money and opportunity costs, especially if a senior loved one has a physical or mental health disability. Therefore, many times caregivers are at risk of developing their own health problems due to exhaustion and unmet needs. By having respite care available, caregivers are able to take breaks and care for themselves.
- ARCH National Respite Network and Resource Center ARCH helps senior caregivers find appropriate respite care programs and services for their elder loved ones. The National Respite Locator provides a state-by-state list of facilities that can help give family members a break.
- National Adult Day Services Association – This is a professional organization that provides adult day care consumer resources, including an adult day care locator and counseling on choosing the right facility for a senior loved one.
- Senior Corps and Senior Corps’ Senior Companions program provides respite care by matching older volunteers with seniors who need help with daily tasks.
2. Health care options for seniors. Do you know all the health care options available to seniors today? Please look at this list.
- Department of Veterans Affairs – The V.A. provides a vast array of support services for qualifying senior veterans and their families, including a paid family caregiver benefit. The program is called Veteran-Directed Home and Community Based Services. Elder law attorneys are potent advocates for senior veterans’ rights and often help secure V.A. benefits if they are denied.
- Medicare — Medicare is a massive federal health program for people aged 65 and older. Senior caregivers might not realize that Medicare covers home health and skilled nursing services in many circumstances.
- Medicaid — Medicaid is a federal-state partnership program that provides health coverage for people with limited income and assets. Medicaid can also pay for long-term care in nursing homes.
- SHIPs — State Health Insurance Assistance Programs, or SHIPs, provide free support to Medicare beneficiaries and their caregivers.
3. Legal planning is essential. If you have a senior loved one, the time to start legal planning is now. Do you have questions about what you or your aging loved ones need? From advance directives to estate planning to long-term care proactive planning, a Florida elder law attorney can help.
We know you may have questions. Elder and Estate Planning Attorneys, PA, is a law office small enough to provide personal service but large enough to provide service in Jupiter, as well as Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, and Indian River Counties in Florida. Our law firm will guide you through legal challenges involving elder law, estate planning, trusts, veterans benefits, real estate, and more. We encourage you to contact us and schedule a meeting with our attorneys.