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10 Things You Should Have in Place for Your Aging Parents
Elizabeth Bemis

By: Elizabeth Bemis on April 12th, 2013

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10 Things You Should Have in Place for Your Aging Parents

assisted living  |  assisted living in ct  |  Independent Living Community  |  senior living  |  independent living  |  60-day stay trial  |  Aging & Caregiving

Healthy Aging tipsWatching your aging parent’s health decline is heart wrenching, especially when you feel like a helpless bystander. It’s during this time; however, you can show your loved one that you are their greatest fan! Start to ‘clean house’ by overseeing the affairs of your aging parents, ideally with their approval, and before a health crisis develops.

 Jumpstart your plans with the help of these 10 tips:

1. Seek Power of Attorney

Know what financial resources are available to your parents and how to access them, for example, savings accounts and pension funds, which can continue to pay for living expenses. Discuss any outstanding debts to be settled. Consult a financial advisor to help make their monies last.

2. Preside Over Legal Documents

Oversee estate plans and wills (know who is executor) including up-to-date living wills (know who is nominated healthcare proxy) that describes their preferences in the case of mental dysfunctions and hospice care.

3. Manage Retirement Plans and Medical Insurance

Remember Medicare doesn’t pay for long term care; be informed on any long term care insurance and what is required for the policy to begin coverage.

4. Access to Birth Certificates and Travel documents

Your parent’s important personal data should be in the palm of your hands or accessible for legal, medical and travel reasons.

5. Access to Motor Vehicle Documents

Transfer of vehicle ownership may be required in situations where parents can no longer drive and possession or disposal of the asset is necessary.

6. Manage Personal Care Items

Suitable attire is needed for nursing care, which may include loose-fitting garments and short sleeve nightwear. These allow for easy dressing and access to medication sites (injection routes).

7. Guard Valuables

Family heirlooms and precious items should be placed in a (burglary) safe.

8. Medications and Allergy Information

Know how medications are best tolerated (for example: crushed and mixed) and be ready to give information on penicillin allergy and other life threatening medical conditions.

9. Preparations for Relocation or Home Care

A geriatric case manager can help you decide on the best housing option for aging parents. For relocation to an assisted living facility or nursing home, help will be needed in packing, disconnecting home cable and other services.  Home care may involve remodeling, private nursing and other logistics.

10. Accommodate Special Wishes

As you care for your aging parents, they may express desires to see a special place, a long-time friend or family members.  Know what soothes their soul and makes them happy.

Key Takeaways:

  • Seek power of attorney over your parent’s financial affairs
  • Preside over your parent’s will and testament records
  • Manage your parent’s retirement plans and medical insurance
  • Passports and birth certificates should be accessible
  •  Transfer of vehicle ownership should be considered
  • Suitable garments are needed for easy dressing and access to injection sites
  • Family heirlooms and precious items should be safeguarded
  • Know how medications are best administered and any allergic conditions your parent has
  • A geriatric case manager can advise on suitable housing options for your parents
  • Accede to the wishes of your parents to soothe them and make them happy

Learn More 

To learn more about independent living, assisted living, memory care, short-term rehabilitation and long-term skilled nursing options at United Methodist Homes, please visit our website at www.umh.org or contact us.


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About Elizabeth Bemis

In 1998, I drove past an assisted living community construction site, learned that it was part of United Methodist Homes and realized the next stop on my professional journey was to work for a mission driven organization. Soon after, I joined the team as Executive Director of our Middlewoods of Farmington community and later served as Regional Manager for the Middlewoods properties before accepting my current role as Vice President of Marketing, Promotions, and Assisted Living Operations. I enjoy spending time with my family, cooking, reading, walking, and love working alongside our staff, residents, and families to build strong communities that reflect the mission, vision, and values of United Methodist Homes.

Our Blog is a 2016 Platinum Generations Award Winner! The Generations Award is an annual international competition for excellence in senior marketing recognizing professionals who have communicated to the 50+ Mature Markets.