How To Prepare For a Respite Care Provider
In choosing a respite care provider for your loved one, you’re making a decision that will be a tremendous benefit to you both. Whether you need time away, your loved one is leaving the hospital or rehabilitation center but not yet ready for home or any combination of these reasons, we can help you learn how to prepare for respite care.
Making the Most of Respite Care
You likely know all too well that caregivers on average spend over 24 hours a week providing care to their loved one. What’s more, one in three caregivers have no help at all with this role according to the AARP’s Caregiving in the U.S. report.
It’s a catch-22; caregiving is an immensely rewarding role, but its toll can negatively affect your mental, physical and financial health. Not only that, the constant strain can also affect your relationship with your loved one, your work and your own spouse and children.
Preparing for a Respite Care Provider
Respite care is planned or emergency care that provides temporary relief to caregivers. Any adult who suffers from developmental, mental and physical needs is an appropriate candidate for respite care. It’s an option that allows you to rest and recharge and/or take care of other aspects of your life so you can provide even better care for your loved one. Your loved one on the other hand gains a break from the routine and, if you’ve chosen a respite care provider in a senior living community, social opportunities, access to amenities and a range of daily activities along with the daily support they need.
When choosing a respite care provider provider make sure to check all the options in your area, then narrow the list to a few you’d like to visit. If there’s no time to visit, then call to learn more by asking questions that include:
- What types of services do you provide?
- What accommodations are available?
- What type of training do your staff members receive?
- What is the staff to resident care guest ratio?
- Is advance scheduling required for respite care?
- Does this type of care qualify for coverage by Medicare or other insurance?
- How long (or short) can my loved one’s respite care stay be?
- What dining options are provided?
- Do respite care guests have access to community amenities?
- What daily activities do you offer?
- What is your policy for visitors?
- How do you handle medical emergencies?
In addition, always ask for references.
When packing for respite care make sure to bring the following:
- Clothes that are comfortable to wear and that are easy to get on and off as well as rubber-soled shoes to help prevent falls. Don’t forget undergarments, pajamas, socks, robe and slippers as well as a light sweater or jacket. Label all items.
- Personal care items and toiletries such as a toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush and comb as well as a shaving kit for men or cosmetics for women.
- Your loved one’s medications; talk to the community as to how this should be handled.
- Items such as books, cellphone or tablet, photos or other small items that will help your loved one to feel at home.
Last but certainly not least, make sure you’ve completed all the respite care paperwork and have oriented yourself to the community and its policies before your loved one’s stay.