When considering the nursing home option for parents or other loved ones, here are a few of the main advantages to keep to mind:
Better resources and equipment: Private homes simply don’t have the types of medical equipment and supplies needed to help seniors stay healthy. Many nursing homes are almost as advanced as hospitals in their ability to provide sophisticated care for patients on a 24-hour basis.
High-quality long-term care: Due to modern medicine, seniors now live longer than ever. While we’re thankful for this, longer life-spans often come with longer periods of late-life illness and disability. Caring for a senior relative at home is often a long-term commitment of many years, sometimes requiring intensive care.
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On average, the cost of elderly health care is $5,531 annually. Family members not only provide hands-on care but often dig into their own pockets to pay other expenses which include groceries, drugs and medicines, medical equipments such as wheelchairs, toilet seat risers and transportation. Many times family members have to miss work and lose out on their income to take care of elderly family members.
Many family members take loans, skip vacations and often ignore their own health. Government must start providing tax deductions and tax credits to family caregivers.
The expenditures incurred for elderly health care is increasing rapidly and reaching astronomical heights. Elders have many special needs when it comes to health care. One is often left frustrated when there are gaps in insurance coverage. Medicare programs offer only minimal assistance for serious health disorders.
There are some programs that cover senior citizens. It covers hospital expenses and doctor visits, even if you continue to work. All one needs to do is pay a premium every month. These programs are popular among a vast number of senior citizens.
One needs to apply for these programs before one reaches the age of 65. In case you don't then one has to pay a high premium. One also has the option of enrolling for these programs after retirement.
The premium that one pays depends on your income and which company you will be purchasing coverage from. Senior citizens with low income are also eligible for the entire coverage under Medicare.
Prescription drugs which are used to treat a wide variety of diseases and illness are fully covered if one has a private insurance coverage. If you do not have private insurance, this could be matter of serious concern. Sometimes drug prices are simply not affordable, forcing the senior citizens to forgo other needs to pay for drugs.
Recent Medicare legislation has been a big disappointment for senior citizens, as drug coverage continues to be limited and fails to reduce the rising cost of drugs. Many seniors are forced to manage their medical plan on their own.
At times, the drug industry provides free drugs to the needy who are not covered under private insurance or any government program. Retail stores in the vicinity provide drugs at discounted rates. There are various medicine manufacturing companies that offer assistance to lower income senior citizens. One can seek out these discount programs if they have a financial need.
Cost of Elderly Health Care
Hospice services may offer help in the form of medical care, assistance and safety, and often spiritual and emotional support for both the patient and the caregiver. This may also include the participation of other members of the family. Hospice care is offered by a lot of organizations, including hospitals and private practices. It provides the necessary help to manage the details and challenges of caring for a sick friend or member of the family.
Some of the most common hospice services may include:
- Medical care focusing on managing pain
- Bringing medicines and equipment when needed
- Counselling and Guidance on difficult issues like closure
- Voluntary assistance for making meals or running errands
- Counselling and support prior to death; and after death (for the family)
One reason to choose in home hospice care is that many patients would like to spend their final days at home. With this service, family members can stay close and take care of their loved one. A hospice team member will come by several times a week and see what is needed. These teams usually consist of a physician, nurses, a social worker, specialists in palliative medicine, a priest or spiritual advisor, nurse assistants and volunteers. The extended group would also include the pharmacist, psychiatric specialists and other therapists. They are available on call 24/7.
Hospice Services are available to almost anyone in need. To become eligible, however, a patient may fall under a certain medical condition category, such as an incurable or terminal illness, and diagnosed by a medical professional to have six months or less to live. A signed form from the primary physician and doctor on the hospice team is needed to start care. Of course, it is difficult to estimate life span - some people live longer than expected and continue receiving care. If people get better, they can stop getting this assistance. Hospice care is available to everyone regardless of religion, gender, diagnosis, sexual orientation, or even the ability to pay. These services are covered by Medicare and Medicaid programs. Quite a few private insurance companies also pay for these services - make sure to check if it will be covered and what services are included. Hospice programs will also be able to provide information on coverage.
The aim of in home hospice care is to bring palliative care to terminally ill people. It is a way to help those approaching death have confidence, dignity, and peace. Hospice care brings humane charity and compassion to those in need. Proper care usually helps people live longer and experience fewer side effects from chemotherapy and other medications. Other helpful activities like physiotherapy, art, music, and massage therapy, are offered to patients to keep them engaged. The attending physician or nurse will be able to help with finding in home care or a facility close by. You may also search online to find a reputable provider of hospice care.