Around the country, many families are discovering the best place to care for an aging relative or loved one is right there in the home.
The National Alliance for Caregiving reports more than 65 million people provide care for a chronically ill or elderly loved one — at an average of 20 hours a week. According to AARP the estimated value of this unpaid care is about $470 billion a year. Couple this with the fact that the average 75-year-old has three or more chronic health conditions and uses five prescription drugs, hiring in-home care may allow your loved one to remain in their home while receiving additional supports.
Keeping a connection
“There are numerous benefits of in-home care,” says Jill McNamara, senior manager of senior care at Care.com. “Independence, connection with community and a close relationship with caregivers.”
Most people will need to hire help. “When hiring a caregiver,” McNamara advises, “Look for experience and ability — but ‛fit’ matters too. Implementing in-home care for seniors can feel intrusive and like a loss of independence; involving them in the hiring process can help them feel empowered and that they still maintain choice and control in their lives. One of the benefits of in-home care is also the relationship, so make sure there’s a connection.”
For tips, tools and advice on hiring a caregiver, McNamara recommends Care.com’s safety center.
One of the most surprising aspects of supporting aging or ailing loved ones at home is cost, McNamara points out. “Care is expensive. Most people are surprised to learn that, when a person doesn’t need 24/7 care, hiring a private caregiver to provide in-home non-medical care is usually less expensive than using a homecare agency. And recent changes to tax laws make it even more affordable.
It’s important to note, however, that as your senior’s needs change, the level of care they require may change too, so at some point and in some cases, a nursing home may be the most affordable solution. For in-home non-medical care, Care.com offers a senior care cost calculator to help determine an appropriate rate for a private caregiver in a particular location.”
Mom and Dad deserve the best. The right caregiver can make all the difference. Find in-home senior care today.