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Eldercare 911: The Caregiver's Complete Handbook for Making Decisions


Publishers Weekly hailed the first edition of Eldercare 911 as an "excellent, comprehensive guidebook." Today it continues to be the best "how to" book on the market for anyone facing the challenges of caring for an elderly loved one. Now this revised, updated, and expanded edition will offer the best step-by-step recommendations for over 200 situations, providing even the most experienced family caregivers as well as professionals with invaluable new insights and guidance for managing eldercare needs. Through a ...
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Publishers Weekly hailed the first edition of Eldercare 911 as an "excellent, comprehensive guidebook." Today it continues to be the best "how to" book on the market for anyone facing the challenges of caring for an elderly loved one. Now this revised, updated, and expanded edition will offer the best step-by-step recommendations for over 200 situations, providing even the most experienced family caregivers as well as professionals with invaluable new insights and guidance for managing eldercare needs. Through a wealth of concrete new and updated information and practical, easy-to-follow solutions to nearly every problem, the message throughout is "You are not alone."
These eldercare consultants have also added crucial new chapters on:
How to Protect Yourself from "Toxic" Relatives - Learn how to survive the negative impact of know-it-alls, guilt trippers, parents in denial, and disappointers.
Aging in Place - Step-by-step recommendations to make remaining in the home a safe option, including insights into evaluating parents’ physical, psychological, emotional, and social needs.
Working Caregivers: A Balancing Act - Reduce stress and maximize time by learning how to prioritize conflicting responsibilities.
In Case of An Emergency - Learn how to prepare for unexpected problems and react without panic to reduce the stress of a variety of emergency situations.
Caregiver Voices - Caregivers share their wisdom to help others renew their strength and lighten their hearts.
With tip sheets that conclude each chapter and journal space for expressing thoughts, Eldercare 911 helps caregivers face reality with support and encouragement while reminding them: "When you’ve done the best you can, no one has the right to ask more of you."
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Beerman and Rappaport-Musson, eldercare specialists, offer a comprehensive guide to caregiving issues, calmly presenting information readers may not have even considered. For example, the first chapter addresses how to deal directly with one's parents, what to do if the parents don't want help and how to determine if parents, in fact, need help. The authors include sample dialogues, which will be particularly helpful with parents who refuse to acknowledge they need help. The section on long-distance caregiving is also quite useful-the authors advise readers to call ahead of time to schedule appointments with everyone connected to family care, from physicians to caregivers to support agencies. They also advise having a portable folder with key contact numbers so people will have essential information at their fingertips. This excellent, comprehensive guidebook offers information on nursing homes, hospice care and home heath professionals. (Sept.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
Discovering that older parents need assistance because of physical illness or frailty can seem like an emergency situation to the adult children who must arrange for their care. This handy guide covers a variety of caregiving situations, including those common to other caregiving books locating services, managing medications, understanding benefits, choosing a nursing home, coping with memory loss, and hiring and handling in-home help. But social worker Beerman and Rappaport-Musson, a certified senior adviser, address important topics not often covered elsewhere making the decision to become a caregiver (or deciding not to); helping a parent who refuses help; recognizing signs of elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation; and recognizing drug or alcohol abuse. Writing primarily for women, who shoulder most caregiving responsibilities, the authors offer much supportive advice as well as anecdotes from other caregivers showing how to counteract the physical and emotional toll that caregiving responsibilities can exact. The concise chapters can be read as needed. Unfortunately, the scanty resource list includes only major government and disease-specific web sites, and readers looking for in-depth details on specific disorders, caregiving skills, or benefit programs will need to consult Linda Colvin Rhodes's The Complete Idiot's Guide to Caring for Aging Parents, American Medical Association Guide to Home Caregiving, or Consumer Reports Guide to Health Services for Seniors. Nevertheless, this is a good addition to larger senior health collections. Karen McNally Bensing, Benjamin Rose Lib., Cleveland Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781591020141
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books
  • Publication date: 10/28/2002
  • Pages: 486
  • Product dimensions: 6.07 (w) x 8.99 (h) x 0.98 (d)

Meet the Author

Susan Beerman, MS, MSW (Fresh Meadows, NY), is the coauthor of the highly acclaimed Eldercare 911. She is president of Barrister Advisory Services, which specializes in geriatrics. She lectures on eldercare and trains clients nationwide.
Judith B. Rappaport-Musson, CSA (Jupiter, FL), is the coauthor of Eldercare 911. She is a Certified Senior Advisor and the cofounder and partner in Preferred Client Services, Inc., which specializes in eldercare management. She lectures on eldercare and trains clients nationwide.
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Table of Contents

Preface 19
A. You Are Not Alone 19
B. How to Use This Book 22
C. Write Us 23
1. The Pros and Cons of Being a Caregiver 25
A. Do You Want This Job? 25
B. Making the Eldercare Decision 26
C. If Eldercare Is Not for You 27
D. If You Decide to Care for Your Parent 28
E. Handling That First Crisis 30
F. The Effects on Your Family, Time, and Health 31
G. What If You Fail? 33
2. Knowing When Your Parents Need Help 36
A. What's Normal? 36
B. Loss of Loved Ones, Friends, and Advisors 38
Loss of Self 39
Loss of Independence and Control 40
C. Decline Is a Fact of Life 43
D. Why Parents Refuse Help 44
Difficult Parents 47
E. What Are the Warning Signs? 49
Memory Loss/Dementia 49
Diminished Hearing 50
Diminished Sight 52
Falls 53
Incontinence 54
Self-Neglect 55
Drug or Alcohol Abuse 56
3. Intervention: When? What? How? 58
A. Trusting Your Instincts 59
B. Planning Ahead 60
C. When Not to Intervene 63
D. Getting a Professional Assessment 65
Private Assessments 66
Public Assessments 68
E. Talking to Your Parents 70
F. Talking to Your Family 72
G. Choosing the Right Intervention 74
Preventive Intervention 76
Partial Intervention 78
Total Intervention 80
Crisis Intervention 81
Legal/Financial Intervention 82
H. Taking the Car Away 82
Providing Substitute Transportation 84
4. Caregiving Realities 87
A. Do You Have Realistic Expectations? 87
B. Understanding Your Responsibilities 90
C. Learning to Be an Advocate 91
D. Hands-on Care 94
E. Supervising Others 96
F. Financial Management 99
G. Recruiting Friends and Family 102
H. Using the Skills You Already Have 102
I. Where to Get the Training You Need 103
5. Long-Distance Caregiving 108
A. Why You Need a Long-Distance Support System 108
B. Creating Your Long-Distance Support Network 112
Geriatric Care Managers 116
Elder Law Attorneys 117
Other Attorneys 118
Physicians 118
Friends and Neighbors 118
C. Preparing for Your Visit 119
During Your Visit 122
After Your Visit 123
6. Finding and Using Help and Services 129
A. What's the Right Support System for You? 129
B. Identifying Your Needs 131
Adult Day-Care Programs 135
Social-Model Day-Care Programs 137
Medical-Model Day-Care Programs 138
Medical Support 140
Family Support 142
Community Support 143
Parent Support 144
Significant Other Support 146
C. Respite 148
7. Handling Burnout 155
A. How Do You Know If You're Burned Out? 155
B. Getting Help 157
C. Reaping the Benefits of Respite 161
D. Managing Your Time 164
E. Restoring Your Quality of Life 166
F. Taking Care of Yourself 169
G. Setting Limits 171
8. Managing Medical Issues 175
A. Learning to Be an Advocate in the Doctor's Office 175
B. Choosing a Doctor 177
Board-Certified Physicians 177
Geriatricians 178
Specialists 178
C. Preparing for the Visit 179
Gathering Medical and Insurance Information 180
Bringing Medications and Prescriptions 181
D. Asking the Right Questions and Getting the Answers 183
E. After the Visit 185
Complying with Physicians' Orders 185
Getting a Second Opinion 188
Returning for New Treatment Options 189
F. Understanding Patients' Rights and Responsibilities 191
9. Overseeing Medications 197
A. Administering Medications 197
Keeping Track of Medications 199
B. Developing a Relationship with the Pharmacist 200
C. Pain Management 202
D. Misuse of Medications 204
E. Abuse and Dependency 206
F. Over-the-Counter and Alternative Medications 209
10. Managing Benefits and Insurance 213
A. Why It's Worth the Effort 213
B. What to Do When a Claim Is Denied 217
C. Medicare 218
How It Works: Parts A, B, and C 219
Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) 222
Point of Service (POS) 223
Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) 223
Medigap (Private Insurance) 223
D. Medicaid 224
How It Works 224
Applying for Benefits 225
E. Social Security 226013 How It Works 227
Special Situations 228
Survivor Benefits 228
F. Veteran's Administration 229
How It Works 229
Who Is Eligible 230
11. Dealing With Serious Illness 233
A. Insisting on an Accurate Diagnosis 233
B. Managing Major Illness 237
The Importance of a Second Opinion 239
Researching Treatment Options 240
C. Coping with Specific Conditions 242
D. Depression and Anxiety 243
E. Dementia 246
F. Agitated, Hostile, and Aggressive Behavior 249
G. Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, or AIDS, in the Elderly 252
12. Coping with Alzheimer's Disease 259
A. Facts about the Disease 259
B. Testing and Diagnosis 261
C. Treatment Options 262
D. The Effects on Your Family 263
E. What to Expect as the Disease Progresses 263
F. Organizing to Handle Mild Memory Impairment 265
G. Primary Communication Tips and Coping Skills 266
H. Remember Your Body, Mind, and Spirit 277
I. Planning for the Future 277
13. When Hospitalization is Necessary 282
A. Facing Your Fears 282
B. Choosing the Right Hospital 284
C. Being Prepared 289
D. Emergency Admissions 291
E. Preplanned Admissions 294
F. What to Bring with Your Parent, What to Leave at Home 296
G. During Your Parent's Hospitalization 297
H. Planning for Discharge 300
I. Leaving the Hospital 302
14. Detecting and Dealing with Elder Abuse 306
A. The Realities of Elder Abuse 306
Finding Help in Your Community 309
Protective Services for Adults 311
Guardians 312
B. Physical Abuse 314
C. Familial Abuse 316
D. Financial Abuse 318
E. Homecare Abuse 319
F. Social Abuse of Drugs and Alcohol 321
G. Rebuilding Trust 323
H. Ageism 325
15. How to Hire a Homecare Worker 328
A. What Are Your Options 328
Family Caregivers 330
Paid Homecare Workers 331
Geriatric Care Managers 333
B. Evaluating Your Parent's Needs 333
Duties and Skill Levels 334
Expectations: Reality Check 335
C. Interviewing the Homecare Worker 339
Legal and Professional Certifications 339
Training and Experience 341
D. Supervising Homecare Workers 343
Your Responsibilities 344
E. Your Right to Complain and Replace the Worker 347
16. Making Decisions About Housing: When? What? How? 352
A. Evaluating the Need for Change 352
Safety and Quality-of-Life Issues 354
Guilt Issues 356
B. Adapting Your Parent's Home for Safety and Security 357
Assistive Devices and Helpful Equipment 362
C. Moving Your Parent into Your Home 364
Space and Territory 366
Adapting Your Home 368
D. Adult Homes 369
E. Assisted Living Facilities 371
F. Nursing Homes 373
G. Moving Your Parent 373
Who Does What? 375
Paring Down Your Parent's Belongings 376
H. Advocating after the Move 377
I. Visiting Your Parent 378
17. Evaluating the Move to a Nursing Home 382
A. Making a Difficult Decision 382
B. Choosing the Right Nursing Home 385
C. Location 387
D. Religious Preferences 389
E. Dietary Requirements 389
F. Specialized Care 392
G. Cleanliness 393
H. Activities for Residents 394
I. Who's Who in the Complaint Process 395
J. Medication/Pain Management 396
K. Patient Advocate and the Bill of Rights 398
L. Moving to a Nursing Home 399
Making the Room Comfortable 402
Clothing 403
Valuables and Personal Items 408
18. Dating, Sex, and Remarriage 411
A. Your Parent's New Relationship 411
B. Remarriage 414
Financial/Legal Issues 417
C. Dating, Love, and Intimacy 422
Sexuality and Sex 423
Safe Sex 426
19. Death and Dying 429
A. Facing Your Feelings and Fears 429
B. What Are Your Parent's Feelings and Fears? 435
C. Honoring Your Parent's Wishes 439
D. Funeral Arrangements 441
E. Grief and Mourning 446
Saying Good-bye 449
F. A New Beginning 450
20. Caregiver Organizations and Resources 455
Notes 467
Glossary 471
Index 481
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