Caring Choices offers a range of services to provide you and your loved ones with the caring services they need to live their lives with meaning and dignity. Because we understand every client has different needs, we are happy work with you to combine one or more services for a comprehensive solution.
Home to Sweet Home
Moving older adults from their own home into an assisted living or nursing home because they can no longer live independently can be incredibly stressful and complex. It’s more than just a relocation; it’s a loss of freedom and, often, a frustrating realization of their advancing age or health-related condition. If the move is related to dementia, any change from the familiar is even more complicated.
And for children and caregivers it can be a source of tremendous guilt and stress.
Home to Sweet Home is designed to make the entire moving process easier for your loved one and give you comfort that you’ve made the right choice. Our skilled care managers will:
Meet with your loved one in the home 2 times prior to the move to ensure they are aware of what’s going on, what they are leaving behind, and uncover any worries they have about this life change.
Visit them in the new home twice a week for 2 weeks after the move. During these visits, we help your loved one navigate their new home. We encourage them to begin socializing, help find the right dinner companions, and identify any desired activities to attend.
Follow up with several weekly visits until we are confident and you are satisfied your loved one is comfortable in their new environment.
Throughout the entire process we watch for signs of depression, including not eating, staying in the room too frequently, increased irritability, and not sleeping. We also work with the facility staff so they remain attentive to any changes as well.
Your Eyes and Ears
When you live a great distance from your elderly, sick, or disabled loved one, checking in on their wellbeing by phone may be insufficient to calm your fears or ease your worries. Through Your Eyes and Ears, our care managers will help assure you that your loved one’s needs are being met. They will:
Visit weekly or twice monthly and make recommendations of what is needed for their continued safety and wellbeing.
Advise you if/when home care is needed, and provide recommendations on the number of hours that would be best.
Refer you to only trusted home health agencies that we have worked with to find the caregiver who has the personality and skills that’s right for your loved one.
Keep in regular communication with you by phone or email.When you can’t be there 24/7, let Caring Choices be your eyes and ears.
The Doctor-Patient Advocate
Doctor’s visits for the elderly population are often a missed opportunity to share with doctors any worries or alert them of health-related changes. When asked how they’re feeling, too often we hear older adults tell the doctor, “Everything is fine.”
Our care manager will accompany your loved one to doctors’ visits, either picking them up or meeting them at the office. We then serve as your loved one’s advocate:
Informing the doctor any concerns we have and any changes we’ve observed since the last visit.
Taking extensive notes so that after the visit we can:
Review with your loved one any of the doctor’s instructions or recommendations.
Advise you of the visit by phone or email and share test results, the doctor’s instructions or recommendations, as well as any next steps or follow-up if required
As part of the Doctor-Patient Advocate service, we can monitor your loved one’s medication routine. One of the most frequent causes of hospitalization for older adults is not taking medications on time, getting confused about what was taken, or not taking one medication at all. As part of this service, our care managers will:
Visit twice monthly to fill pill boxes and make sure the pharmacy refills coincide with the every-other-week medication fill.
Contact you by phone or email to alert you of any changes.
Through the Doctor-Patient Advocate service, we keep you your loved one’s physicians informed of any changes that you can’t see.
Driving Miss Daisy
One of the last forms of independence your loved one may be most reluctant to give up is their driver’s license and car. But there may come a time when forgetfulness, poor vision, or a change in health make this a necessity — for their safety as well as others.
If you’ve had this discussion with your loved one before and they’re still driving, or you’re worried about how to bring this up with them, let our care managers take the burden off of you. We will:
Talk with your loved one to help them arrive at the inevitable conclusion: they shouldn’t and can’t drive anymore.
Work on a plan with your loved one to fulfill as many needs and get as many errands done without them driving their car.
With the Driving Miss Daisy service, we can help your loved one give up their license and car on their terms and preserve their dignity. You don’t get accused of telling your loved one what to do.
The Voice of Reason
If more than one family member is in charge of a loved one’s health and wellbeing, chances are decisions need to be made by committee. Some decisions may be easy and everyone is in agreement; others may be the source of heated disagreement and strife among siblings and relatives.
This can lead to headaches and heartache because family members each have different personalities, may have different agendas, and have different levels of time (and desire) to devote to pitching in to help with the caregiving duties.
If this sounds like your family, our care managers can help everyone arrive at what’s best. Our care managers are skilled in the family dynamic and have lots of experience at sitting down with families of all sizes and shapes to help arrive at the best solution(s) for the loved one. Our care managers will:
Meet with your loved one to get an understanding of their health needs, concerns for their future, capabilities to care for themselves and where they require assistance.
Gather your family in our office or the home to hear the concerns of all interested family members and discuss the solution(s) that everyone can agree is best for the loved one.
So your family is in harmony about what to do but your loved one is resistant. They are reluctant to accept more help or maybe in denial that they need it. With the Voice of Reason service, our care managers will:
Meet with you and then your loved one to understand the cause of resistance.
Ask your loved one all the right questions, listen to them intently, and use their answers to help them see for themselves that they need additional help.
We’re sympathetic that you and your family members may lack the skills and time to continue caring for your loved one. We, however, are objective; we’re professionals, and we have the resources to call upon. We use this objectivity to make it more difficult for your loved one to avoid outside assistance.
Hoarding is an anxiety disorder that can occur in people of all ages, in all walks of life; typically forming roots in childhood and getting progressively more intense as we age.
Children or caregivers of a hoarder often become frustrated with the living conditions, having to shimmy sideways down hallways and step over piles and piles of stuff. After years of not being able to change this behavior, they feel paralyzed and give up.
While all you see is clutter and mess; to the hoarder, those piles are not just “stuff”, they’re a sense of comfort, safety, and security. And getting rid of all this “stuff” can be a real cause of anxiety and panic.
With Beyond the Mess Hoarding Assistance, our certified hoarding experts will:
Help your loved one address their beliefs about their possessions and the behaviors that lead to the hoarding, and teach them problem-solving skills to prevent future hoarding.
Help you understand why your loved one hoards, then work with you to create a plan that will keep your loved one comfortable in their surroundings.
Bring in the needed resources to reduce the clutter level and create functional living space with clear pathways to ensure their safety.
Help organize your loved ones' belongings so they can reach that beloved photo album or baseball card collection that gives them comfort and joy.
At Caring Choices, we have extensive training and expertise in supporting hoarders, and we continue to learn more as the subject becomes more prominent in our culture and daily life.
Silver Lining Services
Caring for an elderly loved one is a daily challenge; but caring for a loved with a psychiatric disorder may push the limits of your skills, patience, empathy, and understanding.
Caring Choices care managers understand the signs and symptoms of mental illness — including severe anxiety disorders, depression and schizophrenia. More importantly, we establish on-going relationships with our clients with mental illnesses where we learn their mental health history, understand what triggers a mental health episode, how they react during an episode, and how often they tend to occur.
With Silver Lining Services, our care managers will:
Devise a care plan to ensure your loved one is taking their medication(s) as prescribed and that they understand the importance of continuing to take them in order to prevent future episodes.
Address and de-escalate a potential episode, talking with your loved through the issue to avoid hospitalization whenever possible.
Provide emergency support should an episode occur and connect your loved one with the mental health care services and support they need to prevent them from being a being a danger to themselves or others.
Prepare a transition plan for your loved from the psychiatric hospital or care facility to post-discharge housing, if applicable.
Advocate for your loved one so they receive the local, state and federal benefits they are qualified to receive.
Caring Choices provides your loved one continuous and compassionate mental health care management services, with access to support 24/7, and someone they can call when they’re not feeling “right”.
To learn more about any of our services, please contact us to speak with an experienced care management professional. 973.627.4087