Caregiver Newsletter

Produced by Caregiver Media Group, publishers of  Today's Caregiver magazine and

Thursday February  05, 2009 - Issue #418

Welcome to the latest edition of the newsletter sponsored by Strength for Caring, a place for caregivers.

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From The Editor

Gary Barg - Editor-in-chief 

After reading your article about hospital advocates, I thought I would write to you about another extremely valuable advocacy program which is available in every state. This is the Long Term Care Ombudsman Program. This program was created under the federal Older Americans Act and addresses complaints and provides advocacy and support for each resident in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Ombudsman are trained to provide information and assistance to residents and their families in an effort to ensure the best quality life possible for residents. They are also trained to resolve conflicts and provide education regarding residents' rights. Often families of residents as well as residents themselves don't realize they have rights. Residents retain all the rights they have as citizens and this is guaranteed by law. I have always felt that some of the guilt most caregivers feel when they are faced with placing their loved one in a facility could be lessened if the families believed that their caregiving role doesn't end when their loved one enters a facility. In fact, I believe their role as caregiver increases because they now become "care managers" to insure their loved one receives the best care possible.

The Long Term Care Ombudsman is an invaluable resource in obtaining that goal and I highly encourage families of residents to contact their Local Ombudsman. Contact information about the Ombudsman Program must be posted in every facility and made available to residents and families.

This program is also an excellent resource to assist families when considering a facility for their loved one. Information about this program is available in every state on the internet and should be accessible on each state's website or contact your local Agency on Aging office for more information.

Joyce Schmitz, Long Term Care Ombudsman, Polson, MT

Thanks Joyce, I couldn’t have said it better myself. I am a big fan of the ombudsman program and talk about it as a resource every chance I get.

Find out more about the Long Term Care Ombudsman program

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Take care

Gary Barg

Clinical Trial Finder - COPD
Prevent COPD exacerbation

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Caregiver Bookclub
Take a look at the new books in our bookclub.  Listen to the interview with two of the authors.

Feature Article

Nutrition Ideas for Stress Reduction

By Cheryl Ellis, Staff Writer

Stress depletes the body of energy in a variety of ways. Loss of sleep, feelings of agitation or depression, and development of poor eating habits are “side effects” of stress that need intervention...Continued

Additional Article
Caregiving Youth

By Hannah Lee, Staff Writer

The face of caregivers in the United States today represents every race, ethnicity and religious sect.  They can be found in virtually every zip code.   And yet, there is still a population of caregivers that often remains invisible. ....Continued

Today's Caregiver magazine - Digitial Edition

Today's Caregiver magazine  

Guest Column
Multiple Sclerosis: Getting and Managing
Health Care Needs
By Grace Curry

If you are caregiving to a friend or relative with Multiple Sclerosis, you already know how difficult it can be to manage that care. Services once covered by health care insurance no longer are available.  ...Continued

(Do you have a story? Tell us.)

Sharing Wisdom on

Tips from Family Caregivers

The best ideas and solutions for taking care of  your  loved one often come from other caregivers. 

Please post your ideas and insights here and we will share them with your fellow caregivers.




The Blues: A Wellspring of Peace
By Dr. Marie DiCowden

How many times have you had "the blues?" Feeling blue or down is often the result of a combination of things: physical and emotional fatigue, a sense of loss or hopelessness that things will never change....Continued


I have been a caregiver for several years now and I just feel like throwing in the towel.  I keep telling myself to hang in there for my loved one but most days the pressure gets too much for me.  Can anyone tell me how to get over this???

Answer This Week's CareNote Support Group Directory. Click here for information about any caregiver support groups in your area.

Caregivers need your help. Please add information about your local support groups to our Support Group Directory. Include the name of the group, where and when it meets, city and state and support group leader contact information.

Have an idea for an article? We are always looking for contributing writers. For more information contact

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Inside This Issue:

Nutrition Ideas for Stress Reduction
Guest Column
MS: Getting & Managing Health Care Needs


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