Choosing a Care Advocate

Caring for the elderly and their specific and changing needs has become a challenge for government, regional health authorities and an opportunity for those in private business. There is definitely a need for additional services to be provided by other than traditional means.

What companies are experienced and reputable?   Where do I begin looking? Who provides what? What does my parent need? How do I get a referral to home care and the government funded programs and what do they provide? Can I use a combination of government and private services?

All good and common questions. To make your way through the maze can be daunting and confusing. I have worked 40 years in public health and as a case coordinator for Home Care and still find the details of each system complex and often not user friendly. Therefore, it can be experience and making the right connections that proves helpful.

Caregivers need a navigator. Someone who can take the time in an unbiased way to assess the situation, provide useful and sensible advice and help navigate the system.

The changes we observe in those we care about are alarming; sometimes progressing slowly and sometimes more rapidly. What are we going to do? To be effective in problem-solving we need information to make clear and simple decisions.

Caregivers need a professional and competent assessment of the situation as it presents itself right now. Individual assessment is key and that takes experience. That I can do and have done for many years.

What does a good advocate provide? Good assessment takes into consideration the wants and needs of the individual and family, provides an honest opinion of where the situation is going and reduces the fear of not knowing what may be on the road ahead. Being uninformed can lead to bad decisions which affect another's life.

Sometimes all we need is one meeting to gather information and other times we need someone to be part of an ongoing plan.

Judy Minkus R.N.  P.H.N.  
Professional in the care of the elderly and private consultant.                              
Email is gjminkus@mymts.net  or call 888-0816

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