Planning is the key to effective care giving

Extracted from the Chatham Daily news:

(NC)—When it comes to your health and wellness, there really is no place like home.

At any given time, approximately 900,000 individuals are receiving home care services across Canada, according to the Canadian Home Care Association. Such services have become increasingly important in supporting people with injuries, disabilities, chronic diseases and those who simply wish to age at home.

“It’s all about living your life to the fullest,” says Carol Nafziger, vice-president of quality for Revera Home Health, one of Canada’s largest home care providers. “With the right care and support, people can continue enjoying the freedom and independence of living in their own home.”

Nafziger says that to prepare for the most suitable home care—whether by formal services or family caregivers—families need to have frank conversations and do their research early on.

• Be open. Talking about aging and disability can be uncomfortable, so many people avoid the topic. “It’s important for families to discuss their needs and care preferences well in advance,” says Nafziger. “Be respectful of everyone’s feelings, and be clear about your own needs and expectations.”

• Educate yourself. Research your family member’s care needs, and learn how to be the most effective caregiver and advocate. Do your homework to see what health care coverage, government benefits, private insurance, or other community support is available to relieve some of the burden.

• Create a plan. Talk about the care options—what resources are available and who will pay for what. Establish what other family members are prepared to contribute, either in costs or time.

• Be realistic. Don’t overestimate the time and effort you can devote to caregiving, and make it clear to other family members and health professionals involved.

• Enlist other resources. Learn what groups and support services are available to you, and be sure to connect with the family doctor, local health units, and seniors’ or community groups that can help. Consider resources like home health care, adult day care centres, respite care, home-delivered meals, etc.

“There is a wide range of services available to help people restore, maintain and improve their health while continuing to live in the freedom and independence of their own home,” says Nafziger. “At Revera Home Health we are committed to helping our clients live their lives to the fullest extent possible whether it be by providing nursing care, personal and home support, or therapy and rehabilitation.”

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