By Kenneth Schulman, CLTC
Parents and their adult
children can never begin too early to think about their families’
potential needs for care in their “golden” years, and there’s no
better time than November to begin that discussion. Why November?
November is National Alzheimer’s Month, National Family Caregivers
Month, National Hospice Month, and National Home Health Care Month.
All of these awareness-building efforts underscore the growing
number of Americans who need or will need long-term care:
- National Alzheimer’s Month recognizes the
progress being made against Alzheimer’s disease and demonstrates
understanding and support for the individuals with the disease,
as well as their families and friends. The Alzheimer’s
Association says 4.5 million Americans have the disease, and up
to 16 million are expected to be diagnosed with it by 2050. As
Alzheimer’s becomes more prevalent, more people, including
spouses and family members, will become caregivers. (Archives of
Neurology August 2003).
- National Hospice Month and National Home
Health Care Month recognize the dedicated professionals and
volunteers who provide hospice and home health care, emphasizing
the importance of respecting and honoring life in all of its
- National Family Caregivers Month recognizes
that approximately 47 million baby boomers in North America are
or will be facing the role of caregiver to a parent, relative or
elderly friend over the next decade. At the same time, countless
thousands of seniors will face the dilemma of caring for a
chronically ill spouse.
As a certified long-term care specialist,
husband, father, and member of the Alzheimer’s Association’s South
Florida chapter, I’ve experienced the impact the need for long-term
care can have on families and caregivers. Each day that I meet with
people to help them protect their future, I am reminded of how my
wife’s grandparents and extended family were affected by
Alzheimer’s. That’s why I’ve decided to focus my career on educating
people about their long-term care needs and protecting their future.