What does your senior care look like?
By Aysha Cooper
Do you know how you would want your care to look like/feel like if you needed it? We plan to hear from some individuals in our community on this matter during focus group sessions scheduled in April and May called CareConnect.
As we began preparation for CareConnect, we met with a group of case managers to get their feedback on our questioning. One question to them was how do they determine services to recommend to a senior that is requiring some assistance during the day, why or why not? To my surprise, adult day health is thought of as a service that is too expensive. Being part of the industry, I felt compelled to take this opportunity to educate the community on costs associated with senior care options.
Have you thought about, if you need care or need to find care for a loved one, where would you begin looking for these services and how much will it cost? Of course, there are several care options available depending on the desires of the person needing the care, the financial situation and the ultimate decision of the family member that is coordinating the care. It is no question services that support aging at home are more cost effective but coordinating the care can be a large undertaking.
Services needed to age in place include Adult Day Health, Home Care, Home Delivered Meals, Emergency Response Systems and out-of-home Temporary Respite. In a cost comparison analysis, Adult Day Health averages $8-$12 per hour (depending on the length of time spent at the day center), Home Care averages about $18-22 per hour and 24-hour residential care averages $2500 - $5000 per month. This brings me back to the survey statement from case managers, that “Adult Day Health is too expensive,” in actuality it is the lower cost senior option available.
At SarahCare, we like to encourage families to use Adult Day Health in combination with other services such as Home Care. This makes the best of both worlds to be able to have stimulation and socialization with medical oversight from the Adult Day Health center and some time spent at home using Home Care. This can strategically appropriate funds and give the person needing the care time to experience them both. So, here are some questions to think about in preparation for care:
• Do I want to age at home or live in a care facility?
• What care services do I need?
• If at home, what care services are available?
• What funding options do I have in place to help cover the cost? Ie, Long Term Care Insurance, VA benefits or Aid & Attendance.
• Do I have someone that can assist in the planning of my care?
These are just a few questions to ask yourself as the need of care arises. We will be looking at these questions and many more during our community focus group, CareConnect. Our first session will be held Thursday, April 20th. If you would like to participate in our upcoming focus group, please email at email@example.com.
Aysha Cooper is the owner of SarahCare of Snellville. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Health and an MBA from UGA. She stays connected to her community as an Alumni of GNLI and currently serves on the board of Friends of Gwinnett County Senior Services. Aysha Cooper can be reached at 770-685-6971 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Published April 2017)