50 Fabulous Caregiving Tips! Forming Your Caregiving Team

By info@50plusandfabulous.com Broadway

Tip# 4: I like to think of a Caregiving Team as a 3-pronged approach, i.e. Family, Medical and Legal. If you are the Primary Caregiver, it is crucial that you sit down with your family members and discuss who will manage each aspect of the Caregiving process.

1.) Family Team: During this process, consider the skills, talents and natural abilities of each family member and construct a plan of action so you are prepared in advance to care for your loved one effectively. I found that being actively involved in my Dad's healthcare which included attending doctors appointments, having a good working knowledge of his medications, and discharge instructions after hospitalization, contributed to Dad remaining healthier for a longer period of time. Your family member will also feel loved and valued because you are making their healthcare needs a priority.

2.) Medical Team: Advocate and remain in active discussions with each of your loved ones Physicians. Ask lots of questions concerning the medications which are being prescribed for their illness or illnesses. Make sure you have a thorough understanding of why a certain treatment or surgery is being recommended. If necessary, don't hesitate to seek out another professional medical opinion. Continue asking questions until you are comfortable that you have received the proper answers to all of your questions. I found it helpful to develop a good working relationship, and an open line of communication with the staff in the Doctors office. I found that when I had a good relationship with the staff, I always felt comfortable calling the staff in case I needed clarity regarding discharge instructions, new appointments or preparations for an upcoming medical test or surgery. Also, it's much easier to reach the staff during working hours as opposed to the Physician. The staff will always know how to contact the Physician immediately if necessary.

3.) Legal Team: An Eldercare Attorney is a great Partner to engage while your loved one is able to articulate their wishes and requirements for a Power of Attorney, Living Will, Trust documents and overall healthcare requirements. This is a very important discussion to conduct very early in the caregiving process prior to a major decline in the health of your family member.