What is Aging Life Care Management?

 

Aging Life Care Management , also known as “elder care management”, senior health care management” and “professional care management,” is the process of planning and coordinating care of the elderly and others with physical and/or mental impairments to meet their long term care needs, improve their quality of life, and maintain their independence for as long as possible.
It entails working with people of old age and their families in managing, rendering, and referring various types of health and social care services. Geriatric care managers accomplish this by combining a working knowledge of health and psychology, human development, family dynamics, public and private resources and funding sources, while advocating for their clients throughout
the continuum of care. For example, they may assist families of older adults and others with chronic needs such as those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia.
 
Overview
Aging Life Care Management integrates both health care and psychological care with other needed services such as housing, home care services, nutritional services, assistance with activities of daily living, socialization programs, as well as financial and legal planning (ex. banking, trusts). A care plan made for specific circumstances is prepared after an individual assessment, and is continuously monitored and modified as needed.
 
 
Aging life Care Managers
Aging Life care managers typically have prior training in nursing, social work, gerontology or other health service areas. They are expected to have extensive knowledge about the costs, quality, and availability of services in their communities. In some countries and jurisdictions, they may obtain certification from various professional associations, such as the National Association of Professional Aging Life Care Managers in the United States. Professional care managers help individuals, families and other caregivers adjust and cope with the challenges of aging or disability by.
1. Conducting care-planning assessments to identify needs, problems and eligibility for assistance.
2. Screening, arranging, and monitoring in-home help and other services.
3. Reviewing financial, legal, or medical issue
4. Offering referrals to specialists to avoid future problems and to conserve assets.
5. Providing crisis intervention.
6. Acting as a liaison to families at a distance.
7.  Making sure things are going well and alerting families of any issues.
8.  Assisting with moving their clients to or from a retirement complex, assisted living facility, rehabilitation facility or nursing home.
9.  Providing client and family education and advocacy.
10. Offering counseling and support.

Hiring a Aging Life Care Manager

Caring for an elderly loved one can be quite a daunting task, particularly if you live far away or have other competing responsibilities, like work or a young family. There are thousands of people in this situation. The media refers to some as the Sandwich Generation, caught between two generations of family that need them. If you are in this predicament, there are professionals available to help you make the important decisions and arrange for the care of your loved one. There are doctors, elder care lawyers, social workers and a relatively new breed of professionals, Geriatric Care Managers. Selecting the best care solution for your loved one is critical and selecting the right Care Manager can help achieve that goal.

What is a Aging Life Care Manager? 

An Aging Life Care Manager is an individual who specializes in helping families who are caring for older relatives. These professionals are often trained in other fields like nursing, gerontology, social work, psychology or a more business oriented field, like finances. They apply this background knowledge to issues related to aging and caring for the elderly.

Most Aging Life Care Managers have been working in the field for several years. They often have knowledge of and access to services that most individuals don’t know exist. Additionally, they may know of financial benefits, government funds or low-cost services that your loved one qualifies for.ht care manager can help achieve those goals.
What services do they offer?
  • Aging Life Care Management usually includes the following:
  •  Assessment of the individual.
  •  Developing a personalized care plan.
  •  Arranging for services.
  •  Monitoring care. Life Care Managers can be hired for a single task, such as arranging a particular service, or they can take on a long term responsibility. For example, an Aging Life Care Manager can oversee the care-giving process for a long-distance caregiver and, since the Aging Life Care Manager is local to the loved one, be available in the event of an emergency. Many Aging Life Care Managers’s also offer customers a financial assessment with regard to care-giving, including finding potential money wasters such as duplication of services.
Why hire a Aging Life Care Manager?
Identified below are some benefits that may help you determine if you need to hire a Aging Life Care Manager:
  • You are new to elder care and need advice and guidance.
  • You are a long distance caregiver and would like someone close to your loved one that you can count on 24/7.
  • Your other responsibilities make it too difficult to provide the desired level of care and attention to your loved one’s needs.
  • The issues that you or your loved ones are facing are becoming larger and more complex than you can comfortably manage.
  • You have trouble dealing with a family member (whether it is the patient or another relative) and need an unbiased intermediary.
How do you find a Aging Life Care Manager in your area?
There are a few ways to find a reliable care manager:
  • Referral: Absolutely the best way to find a good professional. Seek out the advice of others that are in similar circumstances, ask a trusted local health professional or consult an elder law attorney.
  • Government resources or organization websites: 
  • Local agencies or hospitals may also provide a list of local professionals.

Trying to make the best decisions about care-giving can be difficult for you and your aging loved one. Asking for help is a big step. There are many organizations and professionals that can help you. A Aging Life Care Manager is just one of your options.

Independent Living and Assisted Living What’s the difference?

What exactly is “Independent Living”? What is the difference between that and “Assisted Living”? What sounds like a simple question to those of us who work in the industry, may seem like a mass of confusion to those of you that are exploring these options for yourself or a loved one.

While there is plenty of support in most Independent Retirement Communities such as housekeep-ing, meals, transportation, and maintenance assistance, the minute the need increases to the point where “hands on” care is needed such as physical assistance with showers, dressing, grooming, or transferring, then Assisted Living would likely be needed.

Each Community provides a different “package” of services, even if their licenses are the same. Some offer Levels of Care where certain services are included within each level and that level comes with an additional fee above and beyond room and board (base fee). Other communities offer services associated with time involved, such as 1-5 hours a week is this much, 6-10 hours a week is that much and so on. With each increase in increment of time, additional fees are added above base fee.

Ask for any additional costs such as transportation fees, utilities, laundry service or other services that may not be included in base fee. Do they have a physician that makes rounds in the building? Do they offer other mobile services such as eye doctor, podiatry, home care services, and more.

As you search for the right fit, comparing apples to apples can be a challenge. Just remember to keep it simple. Start with the basics then compare and contrast. Most importantly trust your instincts. How does each community “feel”? Talk to residents as you pass in the halls and ask how they like living there.

Remember, this information is more important than the bricks and mortar. A beautiful building does not always make a good home! Also remember, if you’re touring on behalf of a loved one, keep in mind their likes and dislikes, not what you would like if it were you moving in.

When should we hire a Aging Life Care Manager?

 

·      When there’s no local support system in place or family lives too far away to assist regularly.
·      Family members are unable to determine needs, agree on options, arrange for or oversee care.
·      If the burden of providing care is threatening the health of the spouse or primary caregiver.
·      When placement in a facility is necessary and your not sure what fits both care needs and budget.
·      Your loved one displays inappropriate behavior, uses poor judgment or may be easily victimized.
If you’re experiencing any of these or other concerns, call Advanced Senior Solutions. 727-443-2273 www.advsrs.com

Not All Aging Life Care Managers Are Created Equal

Aging Life Care Management is a rapidly developing, newly recognized profession which helps families adjust and cope with the challenges of an aging loved one.

Aging Life  Care Manager’s  are health advocates for seniors and disabled adults. Managers  provide needs assessments, screening, arranging, and monitoring in-home help, counseling and support including family conflict mediation and crisis intervention. They assess the ability to remain safely in the home or whether the person may need to be relocated to an alternative residence. Determining appropriate living arrangements and necessary supportive assistance are among the many services they offer. Additionally, managers’s help to facilitate legal, financial, medical and end of life services.

Aging Life Care Managers become liaisons to families who are separated by long distances from their elderly loved ones making sure they are managing well,
and alerting them to any concerns or problems that may arise. Managers’s have extensive knowledge about the services and resources in their communities.

Aging Life  Care Managers hold Bachelor Degrees, Masters Degrees, or Doctorates in a human service related field such as Gerontology, Social Work, Psychology, or Nursing. As the aging
population continues to grow, the need for strict Aging Life Care standards is increasingly critical.

The National Association of Aging Life Care Managers recognizes the following credentials as exceeding the standard of expertise in being a Aging Life Care Manager;
CMC, CCM, A-CSW & C-SWCM. The certification exam to be a CMC is facilitated by the National Association of Certified Care Managers (NACCM). These certifications re-quire testing, ongoing continuing education and peer review in order to re-certify.

Because there are some individuals working either independently or for a different professional and who refer to themselves as “Care Managers”, it is important for the wise consumer to ask questions when considering hiring a PCM. Some of these questions include:

How much experience does Aging Life CareManager have in healthcare?

  • What are the credentials and education of the Aging Life Care Manager?
  • Are they Licensed, Bonded and Insured? Ask to see it
  • Are they a member of the National and State Associations of Aging Life C are Care Managers?
  • What types of services do they offer?
  • Can they provide references from clients/families?
  • What are the fees and costs for services? Do they offer a complimentary consultation?

When selecting either a Professional Care Management Agency or an Individual, the process should be comprehensive and cautious. The answers to your questions will assist you in
determining whether that particular Agency or Sole Proprietor has the qualifications important to you for a successful relationship.

Expectations of Aging Life Care Managers

Assessment
A Aging Life Care Manager  must first evaluate and assess ones needs, including medical psychosocial, functional, living environment, legal and financial. All of these indicators are important to the welfare of the older or disabled person. The manager gains an understanding of their client with respect to their values, family dynamics, and expectations without bias.
Plan of Care
The manager develops an individualized plan of care which focuses on the areas of concern that is recognized during the assessment process.  A plan of action is agreed upon by both client and life care manager and then implemented.
Services are prioritized and arranged according to the action plan taking into consideration the client’s health, emotional and safety risk factors. Oversight of care can be set in place to continually monitor the plan of care for appropriateness and to make any necessary changes. A manager can get as little or as much involved as the client or family needs them to be. Some only prefer the initial assessment and care plan to be completed which offers them with enough direction while others prefer ongoing Care Management to stay proactively involved in the client’s care.
When is it time to call a Aging Life Care Manager?
A manager is called when the situation can no longer be taken care of by others involved. It could be that the family lives at a distance or the burden of care giving becomes too great for the spouse or loved one. Most of the time, the call comes from other professionals already involved with the client such as physicians, home care, bankers, or attorneys.
Flexibility and Cost Control
Aging Life Care Manager services are flexible as to where, when and the length of involvement. Clients are cared for at home, in retirement centers, assisted living or nursing homes. Managers also are asked to review charts and oversee ones care while in the hospital or skilled rehab. When there’s no local family willing or able to manage their loved ones care, the manager is usually involved on an ongoing basis. Aging Life Care Managers help manage the costs associated with health care by accurately matching services to needs, reduce overuse or duplication of services and work proactively to help avoid a costly crisis.
Trust

There can be different expectations from those involved pertaining to Care Management. It is the responsibility of the one hiring a care manager to verbalize their expectations and have an understanding with the care manager so a trusting relationship can be built. This relationship is vital for the Aging Life Care Manager to produce positive outcomes.

10 Tips on Storing Medications

 

  • Be sure that medications are out reach of children or anyone who might misuse them.
  • Check to see that medications needing refrigeration are stored in the refrigerator in an area which they will not freeze and in where they cannot be easily reached by children.
  • Check to see that medications are stored away from light and heat, which can effect the chemical composition of the medication.
  • When someone is taking medicine, be sure that there is good light so that the medicine label can be seen clearly.
  • Medications should not be moved within the medicine cabinet or storage level. People expect medication to be in a certain place and do not always look at the label.
  • Medications should not be used if there is no label. If the label is torn or defaced, or the medicine is outdated, the medicine should be tossed out.
  • Be sure that medications that look like water or soft drinks are not put in containers from which children or others might drink.
  • Post on or by the telephone, the emergency phone numbers of important family members, the poison control center, and the rescue squad and the doctor.
  • If you’ve been instructed to dispose of medications, do not put them in the garbage or trash where children and animals can get them.
  • Store all medications in their original containers. Some medications can become less potent, or ineffective, if taken out of its original container.

The Caregiver’s Bill of Rights

Caregivers often lose themselves in providing care. Remember ? you have rights too. Post this Bill of Rights where you can see it to remind yourself of your value.

  1. You have the right to receive the knowledge, resources, training and support you need to be successful as a caregiver.
  2. You have the right to acknowledge your own needs and to expect those needs to be met.
  3. You have the right to enjoy a well-rounded and meaningful life that includes family, friends, work, activities you love and time to yourself.
  4. You have the right to seek and accept help from community, family, friends and support services.
  5. You have the right to access quality services that treat you and the person you are caring for with dignity and consideration.
  6. You have the right to all of your feelings as a caregiver, from the moments of unexpected joy to those of anger and frustration.
  7. You have the right to be a part of a caregiving team rather than having to do it all by yourself.
  8. You have the right to ask for ? and receive ? appreciation and respect for your caregiving.
  9. You have the right to acknowledge that the unique gift of your time, energy and emotions has as much value as any caregiving task.

When to ask for Help

By asking for help before reaching a crisis point, caregivers can head off feelings of frustration and resentment. Organizing caregiving meetings is one way to ensure that help is available on a regular basis.
Knowing when to ask for help is just as important as acknowledging that you do need help. Too often, caregivers wait until they are at the end of their rope before seeking assistance. Waiting too long can cause you to unconsciously phrase your requests as demands, allowing pent up feelings of frustration and anger to surface unexpectedly. The person you have finally asked for help may react to your emotions and not respond as you had hoped. Unfortunately, this can push caregivers back into a negative cycle of resisting help and then resentment builds up even further. Many caregivers have vowed never to ask for help again, when if they had only asked for help a little earlier, things could have gone more smoothly. So to reiterate?it is important to know when to ask for help.

Do Not Wait for a Crisis to Ask for Help!

Have regular meetings. Ideally, you should have regular meetings with all the people involved in a senior’s care. Regular meetings ensure that people have an opportunity to discuss their needs and any other issues they may have. It is important that people know that they will have the opportunity to be heard. This lessens anxiety and gives people a chance to talk about concerns before they become issues.

Meetings Can Help All the Pieces to Fall Into Place

During these meetings, people can discuss their needs and responsibilities. Caregivers can bring up items that need to be addressed, identify days that they need help, and just generally solicit assistance. Participants can make a caregiving schedule to ensure that everybody understands their responsibilities and that all the pieces fall into place.

Express Appreciation, Get Appreciation

Regular caregiving meetings are also an important time to validate all the hard work that caregivers do. Appreciation, coordination, and acknowledgement are all key to getting the help you need