What is the role of the geriatric care manager?
A geriatric care manager is a valuable resource for families facing life transitions. While providing tangible services, the very presence of an experienced professional offers families peace of mind and emotional support.
Services start with a comprehensive client evaluation that is performed at home so that we can get a full picture of your loved one’s capabilities. From there we develop a care plan with specific recommendations to address needs. Care plans are very individualized, but may include:
- Assistance with medical, legal, and financial decisions
- Recommendations regarding home care assistance, house cleaning, bathing, and other personal care matter
- Coordination and monitoring of service providers, with reports to families
- Emotional support and counseling for life transitions
- Serving as a long-distance caregiving liaison between family, client, and service providers
How do I know when my mom is no longer safe at home?
Families often struggle with the decision of when to move a parent from the home they feel so comfortable in and it is very common for an aging parent to stridently resist such a move. This being the case it is easy to understand how you might miss some warning signs that tell you the time to make a decision is now. Here are some things to look for:
- Frequent falls
- Weight loss
- Lack of sleep
- Forgetfulness that often leads to confusion
If you are struggling with the decision of what to do next, the best thing you can do to help yourself and your parent is to call a geriatric care manager who will visit and assess the situation and then discuss the best options with you.
If my dad does not want to go out to see his physician at the office any more what do I do?
Physicians specializing in Gerontology will make home visits and assess the client at their home. They will prescribe appropriate medications and provide follow-up care. If the doctor is designated as the individual’s primary physician, claims can be submitted to Medicare for payment.
Does Medicare pay for 24 hour live-in help?
No, Medicare does not pay for home care. Home care services are paid privately by the client. Certified home health aides are generally paid an hourly fee, while full-time, live-in helpers usually receive a flat fee for their services.
Should I give my home to my children?
Before transferring your home to anyone, it is recommended that you seek the advice of an attorney who specializes in elder care. An attorney will advise you on this and other matters including the Medicaid look back policy which is important to know if you anticipate needing nursing home placement in the future.
Yes, a geriatric care manager will coordinate and assist with the transfer and every aspect of the move including:
- Completing the necessary paperwork
- Changing health care workers
- Organizing items that must be moved and making packing arrangements
- Providing services to assist with the adjustment needed for this transition
- Easing the burden of worry so often felt by loved ones who are not available to visit by providing reports to family members throughout the transition and adjustment period
My family members can’t seem to agree on the best care plan for our parents; what do we do?
The geriatric care manager will meet with all members of the family for a family meeting at the home of the elderly parents and provide an objective opinion that is based upon years of professional experience. As an unbiased moderator, the care manager will be able to answer questions candidly and offer a variety of options for consideration.
Why should I hire a caregiver at home from an agency when I can hire someone privately?
Caregivers that come from an agency are thoroughly screened, extensively trained, insured and bonded, matched to your preferences, professional, and dependable. If you need 24 hour care, an agency will see that you get the coverage needed. You do not have to worry about scheduling, taxes, insurance or worker’s compensation responsibilities. If you hire someone privately, you are responsible for all the above.
Can home care expenses qualify as a medical deduction?
Yes, home care qualifies as a medical expense. Keep accurate records and consult with your accountant.
How does payment work for geriatric care management, home care and physician home visits?
Senior Quest care management services are billed on an hourly basis. Home care and support services are priced separately. Fee schedules are available on request. Physician home visits can be billed through Medicare for patients who are home bound.
Do home health aides do house cleaning and run errands?
A home health aide will do light housekeeping as it relates to the older adult. Transportation and errands are provided by home health aides as well.
American Association of Retired Persons
Aging & Disability Resource Connection
Alzheimer’s Organization – Information and Tips on Dementia
US Administration on Aging
American Society on Aging
Benefits Check Up
Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services
Hearing Aid Helpline
Energy and Utility Assistance
NJ Community Resources
Help finding health and human service resources
Social Security Administration
US Department of Veterans Affairs