Aging in Place and Covid

We are all looking and finding silver linings to Covid where we can. I believe we will see a leap forward in the coming years on how we care for aging adults.

Third visit by Emergency Services for my neighbors in one day.

I’m seeing the many ways the current systems are failing older adults who are “aging-in-place” in their home and the independent living section of their Life Care communities.

I have watched as the Ambulance and Fire Engines have come and gone from our neighbors who have recognizable cognitive issues. One neighbor has been in contact with the son, but as I know from being the daughter, there is little you can do to help your parents when they believe they are managing just fine on their own. Our neighbors now have a host of caregivers around the clock which has slowed the calls for emergency services, but now puts them at a higher risk of getting covid since a variety of different caregivers are arriving, who are also working with several other families.

My client who has two full-time caregivers in her Life Care community has been coerced by one of her caregivers to demand some financial changes that have triggered a guardian petition by her family. No one but her caregivers have been allowed in the building for over two months.

Whether it is a matter of safety or dignity, both of these scenarios have put these older adults at risk for things on top of all the other issues older adults face to aging well.

Ultimately, as someone who is employed to manage the daily finances , I see the risk to their financial security.

We just don’t have a practical solution to address the need to:

  1. Maximize personal dignity.
  2. Compensate caregivers living wages.
  3. Provide affordable options that address the health and financial risks of older adults.

I have a few clients with mild cognitive issues that I’d love to pair with a young adult that would benefit from a reduced rent and could provide general support and companionship. Maybe now is the time to test this out.

It doesn’t eliminate the need for caregivers, but maybe the way in which we use and provide caregiving needs to change.

I’d love to hear from those of you in the midst of managing and caring for loved ones in their situations. Is there a way you think this would be a beneficial option for your loved ones? Queried.

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