Is It Time to Give Up the Car Keys?

Guest post by Pamela D. Wilson, advocate for family and professional caregivers. 

We love our cars.  Some of us love the type of car we own and the way it looks: sporty, shiny or compact. For others it’s the way our cars make us feel when we’re driving: a convertible with the wind blowing through our hair. Others love the ability to jump in the car and go for a drive: the freedom and mobility a car provides.

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Continue reading “Is It Time to Give Up the Car Keys?”

How Technology Can Help With Long-Distance Caregiving

 The following is a guest post by Marie Villeza of ElderImpact.org. Her mission is to empower seniors against ageism by providing information they need to keep control of their own lives. Marie developed ElderImpact.org to provide seniors and their caregivers with resources and advice.

The famous Henry Ford once said, “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at 20 or 80. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” When the world and its technologies move so fast, we struggle to keep up — sometimes we resist it — but our life can be easier if we embrace the changes of time’s innovations and learn to use them. The modern world has certainly made long-distance communication more convenient, and if you are care for an elderly parent from far away, you may have some help. Continue reading “How Technology Can Help With Long-Distance Caregiving”

Financial Exploitation of the Elderly: Can You Do the Math?

The following is a guest post by Pamela D. Wilson, CSA, MS, BS/BA, CG. Pamela is an advocate for family and professional caregivers.  She is a recognized expert in the areas of advocacy, caregiving, care navigation, aging parents, family and professional caregiver relationships and long term care. An industry leader, Pamela desires to change the common belief that minimum standards of care are acceptable. To learn more about Pamela and her work, visit PamelaDWilson.com.

Financial Exploitation of the Elderly - Pamela Wilson - Andersen Law PCI recently received a letter with an AARP logo telling me that I may have sewer line issues and that I should contact a particular company to have an investigation completed or I might be personally liable for damage to my sewer line and to the homes of my neighbors. I took a moment and was able to review a logical process in my mind that confirmed that my house is on a well. If there is a well then there is no sewer line. If there is an issue, it would be with my septic tank not my sewer line. If there is no sewer line then there is no potential for damage or to the homes of my neighbors, who also, by the way, have wells and septic systems.  Continue reading “Financial Exploitation of the Elderly: Can You Do the Math?”

Looking for Long-Term Care: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

There are several steps you can take to make sure that you are not making a decision about a long-term care (nursing home or assisted living) placement for your loved one or yourself at the last minute. It’s important to look around ahead of time, consider long-term care insurance and get in-home care before that fateful broken hip or other accident occurs.

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However, if you do end up in that precarious position, a hospital discharge about to occur, you may end up facing the “bad” or the “ugly” side of placement. For example, the hospital may push rushed placement into a subpar facility. Some of these have low rankings, insufficient nursing care, understaffed Alzheimer’s wings warehousing over-medicated individuals in rows of wheelchairs.

If you think I am exaggerating for effect, I am not. I was privileged to work at the Community Support Services unit of MFY Legal Services in New York. This agency successfully brought proceedings against adult homes labeled “hell homes” by the New York Times due to horrors such as bedsores, rat bites, insufficient food and unexplained deaths.

On the other hand, Colorado has wonderful facilities full of loving and skilled care.

Here are some things to look for in order to get the GOOD without the BAD and the UGLY.  Continue reading “Looking for Long-Term Care: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”

The ABCs of Medicare

Medicare comes in four parts not-so-creatively named A, B, C and D.

I use the types as an acronym to sort them in my mind. These are generalizations and, by definition, there is overlap. Andersen-Law-PC-ABCs-of-Medicare-2016

Remember, do NOT fail to enroll or delay in enrolling or you can get a premium surcharge.

Medicare Part A: Acute care for the ill and infirm. This includes hospital coverage, skilled nursing facility coverage, hospice care, home health care. Mental health services can be included as well. Part A does NOT include a premium but does include a deductible (which is $1,288 in 2016.) For hospital stays, there is coinsurance of $322 per day after a 60-day stay and $644 per day after 90 days. Continue reading “The ABCs of Medicare”

Key Documents in Medicaid Planning

If a family member or you are looking into long-term care, you may have heard about Medicaid eligibility planning. Truly, the providers themselves are some of the foremost experts in this field as Medicaid is often how they are paid. 7.20.16.Andersen.MedicaidPlanning

And while a long-term care provider may be expert, that does not mean that you should take their word for it in terms of how to plan and whether to plan to become Medicaid eligible.

Think about it: Medicaid is a needs-based benefit and that means it is for people who are in POVERTY. So the bottom line is that when you plan to become eligible, or to make a family member eligible for Medicaid, you are impoverishing that intended recipient. This has its own consequences. For example, a provider may not tell you that you or your loved one will be moved to a less desirable room or a room with a roommate once eligible or transferred to a “Medicaid bed.” Continue reading “Key Documents in Medicaid Planning”