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The Geriatric Care Manager
By Cheryl Ellis, Staff Writer
In situations where one parent has a
deteriorating condition, the GCM will assist with
helping the caregiver-parent with much needed advice and
social assistance. Aging parents may be reluctant to
move from their secure environment to live with family.
A care manager can accurately review the current living
conditions, and if needed, act as an intermediary to
discuss realistic living options. In this way, family
members are not seen as removing independence from loved
ones by stepping in to alter their living situation.
In multi-child families, one child
may have the role of caregiver fall to them, with too
much or not enough input on the part of the other
siblings. A possible solution is through geriatric care
management. Hiring professionals to not only evaluate,
but channel information about health and other issues is
a clean way to break from being the sole decision maker.
The many service options offered by
GCMs can also include assistance when a caregiver must
relocate to be closer to the senior, or when the senior
must relocate. This not only includes assisted living or
other long term care, but relocation to the caregiver’s
The senior dwelling in Florida must
deal with hurricanes and weather extremes like
blistering summer heat. The old saying of “you can’t
change the weather” can stir up tremendous anxiety in
long distance caregivers. Worries about health and
emergency needs amplify, but geriatric care, once in
place, plans for these things, too. Regardless of where
one lives in the state, concerns for flu season,
mosquito transmitted diseases and weather associated
respiratory problems exist. Again, care management takes
these factors into consideration, developing solutions
before problems begin.
Geriatric care professionals are
connected by a network of professional associations, and
they can connect the senior and family with a GCM
locally to keep the service uninterrupted.
Attorneys, banks, and healthcare
providers rely on geriatric care when there are no
family members to step in. In this way, the client’s
affairs are kept in order according to the law, and the
client is kept well attended. In so many families where
time and distance have separated people beyond
reasonable bounds, geriatric management provides
advocacy and consistency of a senior’s quality of life.
Costs vary from manager to manager,
as well as the detail of service being provided.
Medicare and Medicaid do not cover these services, but
when considering out of pocket expenses such as these, a
caregiver must evaluate both senior and caregiver needs.
Overstressed caregivers will require more medical and
psychological care of their own. By relieving some of
the natural pressure that comes with caring for another,
stress levels fall, health levels increase, and doctors’
visits gradually diminish.