Services for Seniors at a Distance
Your parents live in one province, and you live in another. Your dad has early dementia and lives at home with your mom. You and your siblings have suggested to your mom that you want to find someone to help her with housework and personal care. She agrees - now where do you look?
First, you need to know what type of service you want. Knowing the terminology is helpful.
Adult day care programs are offered in the community to provide social activities and health or medical care. The individual might attend one to five days a week.
Home care or community care programs are offered to help people remain in their own homes, reduce admission to hospital or long-term care, and to allow earlier discharge from hospital. These services are offered through public and private agencies. Public programs are managed by local health authorities and vary across the provinces. Private services are offered by for-profit agencies and fees/services vary across the specific agency.
Respite care is temporary support, given to provide relief to the family. If Mom is taking care of Dad at home and needs a break, you will want to find respite, or relief services. Generally, these programs are offered by the local health authority or through voluntary or private companies.
Next, you need ways to find appropriate services.
(1) Instant Messaging (IM). You can use IM on a PC, PDA, or cell phone.
Example: Search for "home healthcare" and enter your parents' postal code. A list of the nearest agencies will appear, with addresses, phone numbers, sometimes with driving directions, and a map.
(2) Visit the website of YellowPages.ca http://www.yellowpages.ca/index.html
Through Yellow Pages you can find a comprehensive list of services in any location.
Example: Search for "home healthcare" in your parents' city/town. A list of names appears, with addresses, and phone numbers. You can search for the agency that offers the services that you need.
Vol. 3, No. 9, © ElderWise Inc. 2007-2009.
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Originally published by ElderWise Inc., Canada's "go to" place for families with aging parents, who want clear, concise and timely information about health, housing and relationships. Visit us at www.elderwise.ca and subscribe to our FREE bi-weekly newsletter.